By Emmanuel Amatutu
A political pressure group, Deltans Live Matter, Monday, called for the convocation of conference of ethnic nationalities in Delta State where the issue of zoning of the State Governorship could be discussed.
Global Coordinator of the group, Mr Moses Abeh, who made the call during a press conference in Asaba, said: “If zoning of the governorship seat is in the interest of deltans, that means no particular zone has the right to permanently take first in every round. We believe in zoning based on good conscience and morality.”
Abeh who was flanked by the Deputy Global Coordinator, Mr Gabriel Mamuzo and other members of the group, said: “Any of the Zones can start this second round since there was “no” defined order or sequence in 1999 when Delta Central took the first shot. Every Zone had the opportunity of producing the governor in 1999, because the primaries were hotly contested.
“We are not aware of any contestant who stepped down from the contest on the understanding that the governorship had been zoned out to the Central, South or North (we stand to be corrected). So the cheap sentiment that it is the turn of Delta Central now cannot stand.
“At any rate, Delta Central took the first shot previously; it is not mandatory as of right that it must take the first shot again. Our submission on this first option is that “the governorship slot is open to all the Zones”.
“The zone that took the last shot deserves to begin the next round. The reason is obvious: Delta North waited for 16 years (18 years unofficially, plus two years of Chief Ibru inclusively) to come on board IN the 17th year (19th unofficial year).
“Why must they wait for another 16 years before the next turn gets to them? Last out in the first round should enjoy the benefit of first in the second round. Meaning they should bring their best forward to contest the 2023 governorship election. After all, other zones contested the 2015 & 2019 governorship elections hotly against the so-called turn of the Delta North.
“Virtue they say begins from the middle. Delta South came second in the first round. It is not out of place for it to take the first shot in the second round while Delta North takes the first shot in the third round. In other words, at the close of the third round, each of the three Zones would have taken first shot per round.
“The political class should not expect things to work always in their ways, because the State belongs to us all. We are even tempted to make a stronger case for Delta North that took last to take first in this new round or the Ijaws should produce the next Governor; that seems to us more honest, moral and Godly.”
Continuing, he said: “We are aware of how our Delta central brothers hotly contested the governorship primaries against Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan in 2006 & Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa in 2014.
“Had it been that Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan lost the PDP governorship primary in 2006 to late Senator Pius Ewherido, or Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa lost the primary to Mr David Edevbie in 2014, will anybody be talking about zoning today?
“What if Chief Great Ogboru had been declared winner in the 2011 or 2015 governorship election will anybody be talking about zoning by now?
“We witnessed how Chief Great Ogboru was heavily funded by his Delta central brothers in PDP and other parties to unseat Dr Emmanuel Uduaghan in the Jan 6th, 2011 rerun and the April 26th governorship election of that same year. The entire Delta Central State Assembly seats were won by the Democratic Peoples Party (DPP)”.