From Steve Oko, Umuahia
The Abia State Council of Elders has appealed to Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu, to prevail on the members of the state House of Assembly, to pass into law, the Abia Charter of Equity agreed upon by the founding fathers of the state.
The Council of Elders comprising the surviving founding fathers of the state and some elder statesmen who made the appeal during a press conference on Abia @ 29, Thursday in Umuahia, argued that the charter when signed into law would engender justice and equity in the polity.
First Deputy Chairman of the Council, Sir Chimezie Wachuku who represented the Chairman, Ezeogo Anagha Ezeigbe (who he said could not turn up following the death of his wife last week), said it was the desire of Abia founding fathers to have the charter of equity enshrined into law.
According to him, the founding fathers of the state had envisaged the domination of the political space by a particular division, hence the concept of the charter of equity to forestall such ugly development.
He regretted that 27 years after the creation of the state, the political players had refused to legalise the document despite spirited efforts by the elders during successive administrations in the state.
Sir Wachuku said the founding fathers of the state had agreed that political power should rotate among the four letter acronym “A-B-I-A” that make up the state, namely : Aba Division, Bende Division, Isuikwuato District, and Afikpo Division.
He, therefore, urged politicians to respect the zoning arrangement, which he regretted was currently only an unbiding moral law until passed and signed into law.
His words : “God granted the early founding fathers wisdom to agree that the component parts which now form Abia State, and were held together by common association and heritage be grouped together.
“For fear of domination by one particular group over other groups, the organs of government were agreed”.
The Elders Council which announced activities for the commemoration of the 29th anniversary of the state creation said the week long activity would begin with a Jumat service on Friday in all the mosques in the state.
They however urged residents of the state to continue to observe government protocols and regulations on covid -19 in order to stay safe from the global pandemic.
Responding to a question on the feeling of the founding fathers on the level of development in the state by successive administrations, Sir Wachuku applauded the efforts of various governments in bringing the state to “where it is today”.
He recalled that Abia State took off without any “take off grant ” from the military regime that created it, yet the state had been able to rank among successful states in the country.
Reacting to another question if the elders could say the Abia of today was their dream state when compared to the level of infrastructural development in the neighbouring states, he said the efforts of the current administration to open up Aba was a milestone considering it’s multiplier effects.
He argued that if Aba were fixed it could trigger rapid transformation of other cities including neighbouring states.