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2023: Coalition Of Akamkpa/Biase Stakeholders Calls For Microzoning Of CRS Governorship Seat

The coalition of Akamkpa/Biase stakeholders (CABS), of Akamkpa/Biase Federal Constituency, Cross River State has demanded that the governorship seat of 2023 be micro zoned to the Akamkpa/Biase Federal Constituency of the state.

The demand is contained in a press statement signed by the representative of Biase Local Government Area, Chief Emmanuel I. Evong and the representative of Akamkpa Local Government Area, Ntufam E. Itogim Anom which was issued on Thursday during a press release by the coalition in Calabar.

Reacting during the press briefing, George Obeneche stated that the Akamkpa/Biase Constituency provides the major raw materials, food, limestone etc.

He further added that they have been marginalised for too long and have seasoned men and women who are capable of leading Cross River State to a better future.

The Press Statement reads;


THURSDAY 21st APRIL, 2022. 

Protocol. Gentlemen of the Press, 

We the leaders and people of Akamkpa / Biase Federal Constituency of Cross River State of Nigeria, on behalf of ourselves and our good peoples of the two Local Governments, under the auspices of the COALITION OF AKAMKPA / BIASE STAKEHOLDERS (CABS), having patiently and thoroughly examined the past and present political developments m our dear state, particularly as it affects the toning end rotation of the office of Governor, hereby state as follows: 

1 That since the Southern, Central and Northern Senatorial Districts of Cross River State, in that order, have taken thew turns to produce governors in 1999 - 2007, 2007 - 2015, and 2015 - 2023 respectively, the 2023 governorship term should return or be zoned to the Southern Senatorial District. 

2 That across the country, Nigerians are applying zoning principles In determining where political offices like Governor, Senate, House of Representatives, and House of Assembly positions should go to. That is because Nigerians are witnesses and highly informed about the problems of international racism, and our national problems of tribalism, ethnicity, sectionalism/regionalism, cultural and religious intolerance, social exclusion, and the explosion of secessionist agitations and violence. Social exclusion and domination by certain larger groups against others, in the distribution of political and economic opportunities in nations and cultures around the world, has been identified as a major source of economic inequalities, restiveness, tensions and violence m our 21" century world That is why federal character principle is enshrined in our constitution. 

3 That in Cross River State, serious debate in both electronic and print media is going on in respect of the 2023 general elections, and which senatorial zone should produce the next governor indeed, Cross River State is a microcosm of the larger Nigeria. Just as Nigeria is a multicultural nation with about $27 languages, Cross River State 15 a multicultural society with over 50 ethnic groups and languages in her 18 Local Government Areas. There is thus, a supervening need for social inclusion of marginalized groups and inter and intra zonal commitment to zoning principles and rotation in the distribution of political offices across the three senatorial zones of the state. 

4. That we sincerely thank our Governor, His Excellency, Senator (Prof) Ben Ayade for publicly declaring that his successor and next governor of Cross River State in 2023, will come from the Southern Senatorial District, The declaration is in consonance with his principle of ‘politics with ethics.’ The declaration is extremely commendable, as it will help liberate Cross River State from animal farm polities that hinges on predator ~ prey ecological relationship, and survival of the fittest The governor's declaration will seriously eliminate ethnic intolerance, inter-zonal bitterness, and electioneering crisis in the state, as we head towards 2023, and we strongly urge tum to leave a legacy by defending and implementing the zoning declaration with all and the best that is in him. 

5. That in the Southern Senatorial District of Cross River State, there is need for social inclusion and intra Zonal equity over which part of the zone should produce the next governor in 2023. Accordingly, it is instructive to note that section 6 (a) of the 1980 Calabar - Ogoja Accord states that for “Governor, consideration will be as stipulated in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. A very special note has to be taken of the fact of the principle of rotation, whereby any community / senatorial district shall not produce a governor twice in succession. Where any Senatorial District Produces 3 Governor, in the first instance, it  will fall On the other Senatorial District to produce a Governor during the next run.” Section 18 (i) of the Accord further maintains that “As a necessary corollary of this Agreement, the concept of Senatorial District equality and even development, shat also be applied m the relation of the various clans / ethnic groups within each of the Senatorial Districts ” 

6. That implicit in the above clauses 's the fact that the group, community or part of the Southern Senatorial District that produced the Governor of Cross River State from 1999 - 2007, cannot in succession produce the next governor in 2023, when other ethnic groups within the zone have not produced a governor. In the spirit of the Accord, that is tantamount to marginalization, social exclusion, domination and injustice. On the strength of the above, the coalition of Akamkpe - Siase stakeholders hereby draw the attention of the government and people of Cross River State to the fact that the Akamkpa Biase Federal Constituency in the Southern Senatorial District, Comprising 15 ethnic groups (11 in Biase LGA and 5 in Akamkpa LGA) have never produced a Governor, and are accordingly highly determined and committed to producing the next Governor of Cross River State in 2023 

7. That Over 80% of the natural resources, and internal revenue generated into the Cross River State Government coffers, comes from the Akamkpa — Biase Federal Constituency. Government agricultural plantations in the Akamkpa — Biase Federal Constituency comprise Cross River Rubber Estates Limited (CREL), Oban Rubber / Palm Oil Estate (ONREL), 1BIAE Ort Palm Estate, CALARO Oil Paim Estate, Biakpan Rubber Estate, Kwa Fails Oil Palm Estate, and Ayip Eku Oil Palm Estate. Cross River National Park (Oban Division}, Government Forest Reserves, and Community Forests in Akamkpa-Biase have huge carbon credits (carbon revenue) potentials, vis-a-vis the UNREDD Programme, whenever it finally takes off. Solid minerals from the Akamkpa - Base Federal Constituency comprise limestone/cement via UNICEM, granite quarries, basalt, quartzite, and baryte. Cross River State should be fair and just to the Akamkpa — Biase people by allowing them to produce the next governor in 2023. 

style="text-align: justify;">8. That we have mature, highly qualified, experienced, God-fearing, and dynamic politicians in the APC that are currently aspiring for the governorship position in the 2023 general elections. We accordingly and passionately call on all political stakeholders, elder statesmen, traditional rulers, religious leaders, public servants, and women and youths to eschew sentiments, and objectively support Akamkpa - Biase to produce the next governor of Cross River State in 2023, please. 

in conclusion, we the people of Akamkpa — Biase do hereby resolve and therefore demand that the governorship position in 2023, should not only be zoned to the Southern Senatorial District but should be micro-zoned to Akamkpa — Biase, in the interest of fair play, equity, justice and peace 

Long Live Akamkpa - Biase! 

Long Live Crass River State!!

Long Live the Federal Republic of Nigeria!!!

God bless you all.

Thank you.

Chief Emmanuel I. Evong

Biase LGA Representative

Ntufam E. Itogim Anom 

Akamikpa LGA Representstive

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