The Benue South Senatorial District otherwise known as Zone C, unarguably put up a good fight in the quest to occupy the number one seat of Benue state.
This was done through many aspirants from the zone who participated at various governorship primaries conducted by the ruling and main opposition political parties in the state.
Unfortunately and regrettably, they all lost the primaries again to their Tiv brothers on the other side of the political divide. Reason being that the Tiv speaking people are the majority and we are practicing democracy in Nigeria and in Benue state where the majorities always have their ways and the minorities can only have a say .
However, as it has been the practice over the years, political parties will be required to field their respective Deputy Governorship’s candidates from Zone C in order to firstly, solve the problem of power imbalance and secondly, to brighten the electoral fortunes of the concerned political parties.
Asuch, political heavyweight champions and pundits from Benue South Senatorial District are already strategizing on where the number two position in the state should go to, and who occupy the seat.
To be guided in this exercise, there is every need for one to carefully interrogate the existing political sharing formula of the zone; in line with the already established three major political blocs; namely Old Oju (Oju/Obi local government areas), Old Okpokwu (Ado/Okpokwu and Ogbadibo local government areas) and Old Otukpo (Otukpo, Ohimini, Apa and Agatu local government areas)
It is a well know fact that, the 3 intermediate blocs mentioned above had taken their turns.
The Old Oju took their turn between 1999 – 2007 through Late Prince Ogiri Ajene, an illustrious son of the area. Then, in 2007 – 2015 the old Okpokwu intermediate bloc got the number two seat through Chief Steven Lawani, while Old Otukpo is currently occupying the position till date in the person of Engr Benson Abounu.
Consequently, it is reasonable enough to propose and put searchlight for the selection of who becomes the next running mates to the winners of the Governorship primaries across the various political parties in the state for the 2023 general election.
Therefore, it will be so credible and appropriate to beam the searchlight on the personalities and individuals who are already gunning for the Deputy Governorship candidatency from the various local government areas by using considerable parameters.
It is on this note that I want to recomend Ado local government as the most favorable in this regard especially for the People’s Democratic Party, PDP.
The reason for this, is that, Ado LG although with a very huge population and high voting strength, only second to Otukpo local government, has not been featured prominently in the political equation of the state since 1999.
Whereas, its sister local governments like Otukpo, Ogbadibo, Obi, Apa, Agatu and Okpokwu have had opportunities to be Deputy Governors, Secretary to State Government, SSG, State Chairmen of PDP, Senators and Ministers of the Federal Republic of Nigeria respectively.
Ado has over a long period of time been hovering around only state commissioners and the likes. Since the inception of democracy in 1999 till date, Ado LG has not produce Senator, Minister or even deputy governor of our state.
Therefore, as critical stakeholders continue the search for who deputizes the flag bearers, Ado should be a one stop shop considering the facts submitted above.
Ado commands array of intellectually sound minds with cognate political experience and administrative acumen necessary to move Benue state away from all indices of underdevelopment.
Many Ado people have worked for the success of PDP in all elections in the state, and it will not be out of place if present leadership of PDP in the state find it necessary to zone the number two citizen position to Ado in 2023.
I believe that those agitating for the position to go to other areas have not kept abreast of the current happenings. When it comes to issue of governorship seat, strict compliance to zoning arrangements are not feasible again, hence the inability of the Tiv speaking area to zone the number one seat to Zone C.
Nelson Ogbu, writes from Apa – Agila in Ado Local Government Area of Benue state.
Friday, 3 June, 2022