Anger As Benue APC Zones Chairmanship to Idoma Speaking Area

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LAST Wednesday’s announcement by the Benue State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in which it zoned its chairmanship position to Benue South Senatorial District or Zone C, as Idoma speaking area of the state is politically called, has set the entire Idoma land on edge as it is perceived doing so has technically denied the zone the prospect to produce its first governor of the state in 2023.

AVM Morgan, BRM’s National Coordinator.

A press statement from Benue Rebirth Movement (BRM), Zone C’s non-partisan political vanguard for the actualisation of a governor of Idoma extraction, dated September 16, 2021 and signed by Air Vice Marshal (AVM) Monday Morgan (rtd), its National Coordinator, expressed disappointment in the decision of the APC in zoning of the position of State Chairman of the party to Zone C.

According to the BRM, the decision “runs contrary to the expectations of BRM, people of Zone C and, indeed, the teaming population of Benue people who are looking up to APC, as the exponent of ‘change’…to seize the initiative of leading the other political parties in the process of effecting the much-needed change in the political status quo in the state.”

The statement stressed that in the agitation to realise the Idoma governorship ambition come 2023, BRM has so far succeeded in mobilising people from all parts of the state who now massively support the cause for power shift to Zone C.

“Right from the inception of BRM, the agitation for power shift has been well articulated and presented to all political parties and political leaders in the state, including the Hon. Minister of Special Duties and Inter-governmental Affairs, and APC Leader in Benue State, Senator George Akume. He was one of the earliest political leaders contacted by BRM. We look up to him to give all his support to Zone C regardless of powerful vested interests that may bring pressure to bear on him,” AVM Morgan stated, as he called on APC’s governorship aspirants from Zone C to remain steadfast in their pursuit of “the ideals of the entire Benue people who are already aligned with the dream of power shift to Zone C come 2023.”

Morgan expressed optimism that the APC as well as the leadership of other political parties at both the state and national levels will, going forward, “tailor or fine-tune their strategies to align with the popular expectations of the people as anything outside that will be stoutly resisted.”

He appealed “to all BRM members, the people of Zone C and, indeed, the entire good people of Benue state, to remain calm, steadfast, committed, hopeful, and optimistic as our goal is achievable by the grace of God.”

The eleven paragraph statement, entitled; “Zoning of Party Offices By APC in Benue State,” reads in full:

“The attention of Benue Rebirth Movement (BRM) has been drawn to the Zoning of party offices by the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Benue State as announced by its state Caretaker Publicity Secretary, Mr. James Ornguga, on Wednesday, September 15, 2021.

“As the organization leading the coalition of all groups involved in the agitation for power shift to Benue South Senatorial District (Zone C) in 2023, we, in BRM, consider ourselves critical and relevant stakeholders in the affairs of political parties in the state at the moment. We, therefore, wish to comment on the zoning by APC of its state offices ahead of its forthcoming state Congress as follows:

“We recognize the constitutional right of APC to share the spread of its state offices through zoning as it deems fit in line with its political strategy and vision.

“We, however, wish to note that the zoning of the position of State Chairman of the party to Zone C runs contrary to the expectations of BRM, people of Zone C and, indeed, the teaming population of Benue people who are looking up to APC, as the exponent of ‘change’ in Nigeria’s current political set up, to seize the initiative of leading the other political parties in the process of effecting the much-needed change in the political status quo in the state. Our understanding is that the zoning of the position of State Chairman to Zone C where it has always been since the beginning of the current political dispensation in 1999 does not reflect the change Benue people now desire.

“While we do not view the zoning of the state Chairmanship position to zone C as a deliberate attempt by APC to scuttle the popular yearning by Benue people to elect the state Governor from Zone C in 2023, we nonetheless consider it inimical to the achievement of that objective.

“For this reason we do not expect, let alone encourage, any zone C member of the party to accept to occupy the position. We want to draw the attention of all APC members to the request of our Majesty, the Och’Idoma IV during his recent visit to Tor Tiv’s Palace. Any member aspiring to the office of State chairman of APC should know that he/she is working against the desire of the Royal Fathers and the entire people of Zone C.

“BRM is watching developments in APC carefully. While we are not interested in the internal politics of the party, we are very much interested in the political equation that will lead up to the Governorship election in 2023. Therefore, BRM will reject in its entirety any attempt to scuttle our desire.

“In the journey to 2023, BRM has mobilized people from all parts of Benue state to the extent that there is massive support for power shift to Zone C. Right from the inception of BRM, the agitation for power shift has been well articulated and presented to all political parties and political leaders in the state, including the Hon. Minister of Special Duties and Inter-governmental Affairs, and APC Leader in Benue State, Senator George Akume. He was one of the earliest political leaders contacted by BRM. We look up to him to give all his support to Zone C regardless of powerful vested interests that may bring pressure to bear on him.

“We call on all Governorship aspirants in APC from Zone C to remain steadfast and to aggressively pursue the ideals of the entire Benue people who are already aligned with the dream of power shift to Zone C come 2023.

“We are hopeful that the APC and, indeed, other political party leadership in the state and at the national level, going forward, will also tailor or fine-tune their strategies to align with the popular expectations of the people as anything outside that will be stoutly resisted.

“We wish to appeal to all BRM members, the people of Zone C and, indeed, the entire good people of Benue state, to remain calm, steadfast, committed, hopeful, and optimistic as our goal is achievable by the grace of God. We also urge those who are yet to key into the agitation to join the moving train that is heading towards a glorious dawn for our dear Benue state.”

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