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Dr Alex Ekwueme
Dr Alex Ekwueme

Ekwueme, Anyaoku, Ezeife others back restructuring

condemn quit notice on Igbos

By John Ndu, Awka

Federal government has been charged to quickly intervene in the present condition of the country and embrace restructuring as a viable option to end various agitations by different regions.

This was contained in a communique, released after a closed door meeting of Anambra State Elders’ Advisory Council, at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia.

The Communique produced after a Five hours meeting was signed by four top personalities such as the former Secretary General, Commonwealth, and the Chairman of the Council, Chief Emeka Anyaoku,  the Former Vice President of Nigeria, Dr Alex Ekwueme, the Former Governor of Anambra State, Dr Chukwuemeka Ezeife  and the Former Minister of Health, Dr Tim Menakaya.

Other dignitaries at the meeting include the First female Governor, in Nigeria and Former Deputy Governor, Anambra State, Dame Virginia Ngozi Etiaba, the Former Chairman Police Service Commission, Chief Simon Okeke, Anambra State Chairman Ohaneze Ndigbo, Chief Okeke Ogene, the Catholic Bishop of Awka Diocese, Most Rv Dr Paulinus Ezeokafor, among other personalities as well as Traditional Rulers.

Reading the Communique on behalf of the Council, the Chairman Chief Anyaoku said the meeting was centered on the present state affairs in the country, Nigeria, including in particular, the forthcoming gubernatorial election in Anambra State come November 18th, 2017.

The Council observed that the incessant agitations by different ethnic groups were as a result of unequal distribution of resources, where some region are being marginalized and relegated to the background.

According to him “We firmly believe that there is no large of this country that does not benefit holistically from belonging to one large Nigerian; we therefore see agitations currently for a Republic of Biafra and potentially for a Niger Delta Republic and an Oduduwa Republic as manifestations of strong grievances by the agitators. In the case of Biafra induced by both perceived failure to heal the wounds of Civil War and continuing marginalization of the South East Zone by the Federal Government, and in the other two cases induced by a strong conviction that the present governance structure and performance of the Federal Government Constitute a great obstacle to the development and self fulfilment of their people.”

The Council traced the problem of Nigeria to the long invasion of military, calling for a total paradigm shift from unitary structure to true federalism.

” The root cause of the under performance is the transformation of the country’s structure of governance from true federalism carefully negotiated and agreed in the 1960/63 Constitutions by the country’s founding fathers to the effectively unitary structure which arose from prolonged period of military intervention in the government of the country.

“There is urgent need for arresting this national drift through a restructuring of the country’s present governance architecture by returning to a true federalism based on fewer and more viable federating units.

“We are convinced that restructuring will usher in greater national cohesion and a more united country where all the citizens in the component regions can pursue their self fulfilment with equity and fairness “

” We call on the Federal Government, particularly the Executive and Legislature to urgently take steps to initiate the process of restructuring “

The Council noted it had joined force with Ohaneze Ndigbo in calling on the federal government to urgently address the quit notice given to Igbos by the Northern Youths.

Chief Anyaoku called on Anambra people to avail themselves of the opportunity to exercise their civic responsibility without disruptions, come November 18th governorship election in the state.

The Council also commended the South East Governors for their strong will in promoting the unity and peace of Igbos, urging them to sustain their periodic meeting and further discuss other issues that would ensure oneness.

Speaking on Zoning, the Council observed that ” We see great value for peace and security in sustaining the zoning formula for political offices in the state as adopted by Ohaneze Ndi Igbo Anambra state and also resolve respectively by the Traditional Rulers Council and Anambra State Association of Town Unions (ASATU), and call on candidates for the governorship election and their sponsoring political parties to eschew indecorous language and violence in their political campaigns.”

The Council equally charged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to conduct an election for Anambra Central Senatorial District, to enable them benefit from every available distribution of resources.

The Council Chairman also condemned in strong terms the recent massacre at St Philip’s Catholic Church, Ozubulu, calling on law enforcement agencies to ensure that the perpetrators were brought to justice.

Chief Anyaoku however extolled the efforts of Governor Obiano in developing every aspect of the state, especially security and other developments attracted since he assumed

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