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Anambra 2021: Discord Over Zoning

By Political Editor



Obiano dollars

Permutations over the next governorship election in Anambra State are beginning to take shape with the issue of zoning rising as an issue among some stakeholders in the state.

The next governorship election is not due until late 2021.

Contenders from Anambra South Senatorial zone are desiring that other senatorial zones in the state allow the zone to produce the next governor of the state following eight straight years of Anambra Central and Anambra North. The last governor from the zone was Ihiala born Dr. Chinwoke Mbadiniju who served between 1999 and 2003 and was denied a second term.

However, that contention is being challenged head on by other stakeholders who contend that Anambra South has repeatedly been a player in all governorship elections at party and at the main elections.

Mr. Peter Obi, the immediate past governor of the state became the first to openly make a position on the issue when he distanced himself from the contention on the zoning of the office of governor.

The former governor of the state and vice-presidential candidate in a statement said his canvassing for the emergence of Willie Obiano from Anambra North as his successor was to promote equity and not on the premise of zoning.

Other stakeholders are also saying that zoning has not been an issue in the state until now.

Obi had in early April in a statement issued through his spokesman, Val Obienyem said that his position on Anambra North producing his successor was “in the spirit of justice and equity insisting that the governorship candidate should go to Anambra North since they were, at that time, the only zone yet to produce a Governor.”

Obi: Says he should not be linked to zoning

Continuing, the former governor said: “If at any time the state wants rotation or any form of political arrangement, it would not be the imposition of one man because, if allowed to stand, history may interpret such as a predisposition of Obi to autocracy. In a democracy, decisions are by consensus and not a one-man-show.”

Those against zoning of the next governorship election point to the fact that all the three senatorial zones in the state have consistently been part of the governorship elections in the state.

The first governor of the state in 1999, Dr. Chinwoke Mbadiniju was from Anambra South followed by Dr. Chris Ngige and Mr. Peter Obi who are both from Anambra Central and lately, Mr. Obiano from Anambra North.

However, the agitation by some to cede the office to Anambra South is receiving serious contention by some other stakeholders who assert that Anambra South had in the past consistently contested the office.

“Besides Mbadiniju, the likes of Ifeanyi Ubah, Prince Nicholas Ukachukwu, Andy Ubah had been recurring figures in past governorship elections, so there is no way that other zones will leave it for the South,” one stakeholder with an eye towards the next election told

Meanwhile with Senator Andy Ubah out of the Senate it is the belief among some that he may be revving for another shot at the governorship.

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