Imo State News : Constitutional review Update
…We need Aba, Adada states in Southeast -Aba Movement leadership
Hope Uzodimma, the governor of Imo state, said Wednesday that the Igbo people wanted a constitutional review that would provide them with justice and equity rather than secession.
Uzodimma spoke during the opening ceremony of the National Assembly Constitutional Review Committee Public Hearing For The Southeast Zone, which was chaired by Orji Uzor Kalu, the former governor of Abia state and now a Senator, and was titled “recommended adjustment to the provisions of the Federal Republic of Nigeria’s constitution.”
The clamour for justice and equity, according to Uzodimma, demonstrated that Igbos wanted to be a part of the country’s decision-making process.
“For us as authentic leaders, sincerely devoted to the Igbo question, the question agitating our thoughts is,” the governor remarked. What do the Igbo expect from Nigeria? Without seeming simplistic, fairness and equity are what we desire. When we talk about power devolution or restructuring, what we’re really talking about is having an atmosphere built that allows us to fully express our potential and talent without interference. We’re also talking about being treated the same as the rest of Nigeria. More importantly, we’re discussing being a part of Nigeria’s decision-making process. It implies that we are not discussing dominance or secession.”
“In my mind, Ndigbo are better off being part of the larger Nigeria with vast opportunities opened to us than being confined in a separate space with limited opportunity. In every part of Nigeria outside the South East, we form the second largest population. As an itinerant group, we move around to expand our economic frontiers. As citizens of Nigeria, we are afforded that lease of Life. Our people are suffering harassment in South Africa and Ghana and other countries. Is that what we want to bequeath to our younger generation if, in hastily contrived indignation, we abandon our heritage in Nigeria?
“So my dearest brothers and sisters, we need Nigeria just as Nigeria needs us. Whatever be our grievances against the system, we have a golden opportunity to seek redress under the upcoming constitutional review. What we seek is justice and equity for our people to thrive. And for that, we owe nobody any apology. But we cannot achieve it through violence or threat of secession. It is through an avenue like this that we put forward our request and follows it through.”
“I, therefore, appeal to our youths to listen to the voice of reason. What an old man sees sitting, a child cannot see even if he climbs an iroko tree. Let us to the path of peace. All shall be well. If we remain firmly committed to the unity of Nigeria we shall get all we seek.”
In another development, the leadership of Aba state movement, led by Elder Emmanuel Adaelu, said among other things that the constitution review committee should consider the report of the committee on state creation of the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide under Nnia Nwodo, he said: “The Committee should consider the merit for the creation of Aba and Adada States respectively, resolved and recommended for the creation of Aba State, with 12 members supporting, and 5 abstaining. The Committee also recommended that any other State Creation exercise in the South-East should give Adada State priority.
“The Committee’s letter of 18 October 2018, to Governor Dave Umahi, Chairman of the South-East Governors Forum stated that Committee Chairman Professor Chigozie Ogbu and its Secretary Barrister Uche Okwukwu signed the report.
“Aba State Movement stood by the Ohanaeze Committee recommendation since all groups agitating for a State in the South East fully participated in the Committee’s work by making presentations to it.
“The Committee did a great job. It went through the tomes of documents the 11 proposed areas for state creation submitted to it. Among the documents requirements were evidence that the proposed areas had complied with constitutional requirements for state creation in Sections 8 and 9.
“We were delighted by the final recommendation Committee to the South-East Governors Forum to enable its transmission to the National Assembly through Executive Bill as promised by President Muhammadu Buhari when an Ohanaeze delegation visited the President in November 2017.
“Aba State Movement appeared at the Senate Committee on constitutional review was to present the case for the creation of Aba State which the Ohanaeze Committee confirmed in its report to the South-East Governors Forum.”
“Chief Theo Nkire, first Attorney-General of Abia State, made Aba State Movement’s presentation to the Senate Committee on constitutional review chaired by Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, former Governor of Abia State,” Ohanaeze said.
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