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Anioma State: Timi Advises Nwoko To Seek Doctrine Of Necessity



Anioma State Timi to Nwoko

Dr Tonye Timi, a former member of the Delta House of Assembly has advised Sen. Ned Nwoko to lobby critical stakeholders for “Doctrine of Necessity” to actualise the creation of Anioma State.

Timi gave the advice in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday.

Nwoko had in June proposed the creation of Anioma State in the Senate,  to balance the representation from the South East Geopolitical Zone.

He explained that the creation of the state would address the long standing imbalance in the geopolitical distribution of states in Nigeria.

According to him, the South East  geopolitical zone currently has five states, unlike its counterparts except for the North West, which has seven states.

“This disparity results in an imbalance of representation and resources, with the South South having only 15 lawmakers, compared with the 18 lawmakers of other zones in the senate.

“This inequality  affects legislative representation and the distribution of national resources, perpetuating a long-standing injustice,” he said.

However, Timi explained that the importance of lobbying for the ‘’Doctrine of Necessity’’ in this regard could not be over-emphasised in view of the framework for state creation in Nigeria.

According to him, in the Nigerian legal space, two major legislations are relevant to the issue of state creation, and they include the 1999 Constitution and the Creation of States and Boundary Adjustments (Procedure) Act, 1982.

‘’Section 8 (1) of the 1999 constitution provides that for a new state to be created, a request supported by at least two-thirds majority of members (representing the area demanding the creation of the new State) is made in writing to both chambers of the National Assembly.

‘’Section 1(2) (c) of Creation of States and Boundary Adjustments (Procedure) Act, 1982 further provides that the request to the local government councils in respect of the area must be in respect of the area, only if those members append their signatures or right-hand thumb impressions to the request.

‘’Section 1(3) of the Act, outlines the detailed particulars of information that must be contained in the request for the creation of states which are the name of the proposed state, full and clear description of the area covered by the request.

‘’Others include the names of all elected members for the time being of the local government councils, House of Assembly, House of Representatives and the Senate, representing the area covered by the request.’’

The former state lawmaker who represented Patani constituency in Delta between 2015 till 2019, also that lobbying for the ‘’Doctrine of Necessity’’ was imperative for Nwoko’s quest as the concept of “Anioma bu ofu” (Anioma is one) was fallacious.

‘’The name Anioma is an artificial creation which is not rooted in any history.  Prof. Awo Okecha in his position paper said that the word was coined not long ago by four people.

‘’According to Okecha, one was a professor from Ika, two professors from Aniocha and one rich businessman form Aniocha. No Ukwuani man was involved in the choice and coinage of the term.

‘’Another School of thought stated that it was Chief Osadebey who suggested the use of the territories of Aniocha, Ndokwa, Ika and Oshimili acronym at a meeting. Coincidentally, the word ANIOMA translates into the good land.’’ Timi fuether explained.

He said that the ethnic nationalities that made up the artificial Anioma creation therefore have their diverse history, cultural identities, language variations among others but bound together by geography.

Timi said that he was not against the creation of Anioma state and that, like most citizens from this area share the same view that creating it was necessary.

‘’Where the controversy exists is whether the state should be part of the south eastern part of the country or not’’, he said.

Source: NAN

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