WRITTEN BY CHINEDU OBIDIGWE
No doubt, it is for the purposes of justice, equity and fairness that the principle federal character in strategic appointments is enshrined in the Nigerian constitution.
Furthermore, the 1995 constitutional conference approved the principle of zoning and rotation as championed by delegates from the Southeast under the leadership of former Vice President Alex Ekwueme. In fact, it was the recommendations of the conference that gave birth to the six geopolitical zones in Nigeria.
Thus, zoning and rotation is today being practiced in the country from the federal to the state, local council and community levels. This has to, a very large extent, promoted justice, equity and fairness, therefore engendering harmony and peaceful co-existence in the country. However, it is usually the unwillingness to put it into practice that generates tension or leads to disquiet and outright breakdown of law and order in some parts of Nigeria.
The defunct National Party of Nigeria, NPN, was the first political party in the country to enshrine zoning and rotation in its constitution. In 2010, the All Progressives Grand Alliance, APGA, while campaigning for the re-election of ex-governor Peter Obi, embraced the zoning and rotation ideal. APGA, under its supreme leader, late Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu (Ezeigbo gburu gburu), pledged to transfer the governorship seat to Anambra North Senatorial District after the tenure of Chief Obi, who is from the Central District. Consequently, Chief Willie Obiano was elected. With the support and sponsorship of APGA, former Governor Obi served his two terms. It is therefore fair that Governor Obiano deserves to be given the opportunity to go for re-election in next year's governorship election in the state. Apart from the undeniable fact that Governor Obiano is performing brilliantly, it is said that what is good for the geese is also good for the gender.
In the past, Dr. Chukwuemeka Ezeife and Dr. Chinwoke Mbadinuju from Anambra South had governed the state for a total of about six years, while Dr. Chris Ngige and Sir Peter Obi from Anambra Central had also governed the state for eleven years. Even though a former deputy governor of the state, Dame Virgie Etiaba and Senator Andy Uba from Anambra South, somehow became governors under disputatious circumstances, they were nevertheless at some times in Anambra history sworn in as governors.
Anambra North had the opportunity of ever occupying the exalted office of the governor of the state in 2014, through Governor Obiano. This came twenty three years after the creation of the state in 1991.
Happily, Governor Obiano is steadfastly acquitting himself creditably in terms of good governance and delivery of democracy dividends.
Indeed, Governor Obiano has introduced so many innovations in less than three years, thus making the state a model of good governance in the country. His security initiative is superb. His agricultural revolution is commendable. His investment condition through the
Anambra State Investment Promotion and Protection Agency, ANSIPPA, is so alluring, leading to attraction of over four point seven billion dollars worth of investments in less than three years.
This is unprecedented. Therefore, Governor Obiano deserves to be re-elected.
It would be foolhardy for another gubernatorial candidate to emerge from Anambra North because if such candidate, other than Governor Obiano, is elected, he would be constitutionally entitled to go for a second term in 2022, thus totally destroying the zoning and rotation ideals to the detriment of justice, equity and fairness. It would also
be ill advised and greedy for politicians from Anambra Central and South to be nursing gubernatorial ambition for next year's election.
Therefore, in order to sustain and further entrenched the prevailing peace and stability in our beloved state, the Anambra electorate should vote massively for Governor Obiano in the next governorship poll which comes up in the last quarter of 2017. Forward ever, backward never.