Abia North Stakeholders Task Ikpeazu’s Kinsmen on Implementation of Power Shift Agreement
Emmanuel Ugwu-Nwogo in Umuahia
As the tussle continues over which Abia State zone should produce Governor Okezie Ikpeazu’s successor, stakeholders of Abia North senatorial district have put Ikpeazu’s kinsmen on the spot, reminding them of the power shift agreement said to have been agreed on in 2019.
The stakeholders spoke about the agreement at Umunneochi, Isuikwuato and Bende Councils during the consultative visits of a governorship aspirant and the state Deputy Governor, Sir Ude Oko Chukwu, to PDP delegates in the three council areas. They insisted that the Ukwa-Ngwa people have no reason to renege on the power shift agreement.
Ikpeazu’s kinsmen are neck deep in efforts to retain power in 2023 thereby setting off the alarm bell in Abia North, hence, the call by stakeholders on the Ukwa Ngwa bloc not to renege on the said agreement to support Abia North for 2023 governorship.
According to them, the elders and traditional rulers of Ukwa Ngwa had at a meeting with their Abia North counterparts on March 5, 2019, at Uturu in Isuikwuato council area, pleaded for the people Abia North to support Ikpeazu’s re-election in 2019. In return, Ikpeazu’s kinsmen were said to have promised that Abia North would be supported to produce the governor in 2023 at the end of Ikpeazu’s tenure.
Former state Commissioner for Housing, Mr. James Okpara, pointed out that no Ukwa Ngwa elder or monarch has denied the agreement they made with the people of Abia North, adding that it was expected of them to ensure that the agreement on power shift to Abia North was implemented.
“The elders of Ukwa Ngwa land met us at the residence of Prof. Gregory Ibe in Uturu, Isuikwuato LGA. They came with drinks and kola nuts, pleading with the elders of Abia North to support the re-election of Ikpeazu in 2019, while they will reciprocate by supporting power shift to Abia North in 2023.
“We ate and drank together and reached an agreement. In Igbo land, when you have a meeting of such nature, you have entered into a covenant,” he said.
To drive home the claim of Abia North stakeholders, Okpara, who is a legal practitioner, said aside from three persons that are late, others that participated at the meetings are still alive and one of them have repudiated the agreement on power shift to Abia North.