It is the turn of the Aba Zone to govern Abia State in 2023, Ukwa-Ngwa Leaders of Thought has insisted in a carefully worded response to former Governor Theodore Orji.
The group stated that equity in Abia State demands an effort to balance the equation that now stands at 18 years in Government House for the Umuahia old Bende) Zone and only eight years for Aba Zone.
In its press statement, signed by Keneth Nkoro, Chairman, and Chief Henry Irondi, Secretary the group saiid that “18 years of Umuahia (old Bende) Zone to 8 years of Aba Zone cannot be equity”.
It decried attempts to distort the meaning and intentions of the Abia Charter of Equity quoted by the former governor and persons from the Umuahia (old Bende) Zone.
The statement cited the Abia Charter of Equity signed on 2 August 1981 by top politicians from Aba and Umuahia Zones for the proposed Abia State. The information affirmed, “The principle behind the Charter of Equity was that power should rotate between Aba and Umuahia old Bende), the two parties to the agreement which pre-dated the creation of Abia State 10 years later.
“Aba Zone of Abia State asks for strict adherence to the Charter. We decry efforts by some persons to borrow its lines on equity for their selfish benefit. We support equity and advise our brothers from Umuahia (old Bende) Zone to access equity without blemished hands. There is only one meaning of equity which revolves around fairness and justness,” they held.
The record of the civilian governorship of Abia State shows Umuahia (old Bende) Zone has dominated so much equation does not balance. Umuahia has produced Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, two years of January 1992-November 1993, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, eight years of May 1999 to May 2007, Dr. Theodore Orji, another eight years of May 2007 to May 2015. It adds up to 18 years. Aba Zone has had only Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu, who will complete eight years from May 2015 to May 2023.
Ukwa-Ngwa questioned, “What type of equity equates eight years to 18 years? Was equity absent when Umuahia Zone had the governorship for 18 years? Another eight years for Umuahia Zone would be 26 years for Umuahia Zone and eight years for Aba Zone. We do not see any equity in that proposal.”
It called on Abians to respect each other and observe fairness and justice. Ukwa-Ngwa Leaders of Thought also asserted that Governor Okezie Ikpeazu had the prerogative to select his successor in consultation with the party. “That has been the practice and it cannot be different now,” they said.
About threats by those opposed to equity, the group stated, “We issue no threats. However, we are determined to pursue our case for equity by all legitimate means. Aba Zone should by the Abia Charter of Equity dictates produce the Governor of Abia State in 2023.”