By Harris Emanuel, Uyo
A pressure group, Oro Think Tank has accused governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State of marginalising the Oro ethnic group in his recent board appointments.
Chairman of the Oro Think Tank and former commissioner for information, Prince Chris Abasi Eyo in a press release obtained by Vanguard expressed dismay over the governor’s exclusion of Oron federal constituency from board appointments.
He described as an unfair that nobody from Oron federal constituency, comprising five local government areas was included in appointments into the various boards.
He listed the boards to include State Universal Basic Education, State Secondary Education, the State Local Government Service Commission, the State Assembly House of Assembly Service Commission and the State Board of Internal Revenue Service.
Eyo said, ”Recently, His Excellency constituted the Board of the State Universal Basic Education (SUBEB). It’s difficult to know what formula the Governor uses to ensure fairness in the distribution of these projects, industries and appointments. In fact, it seems while each announcement of appointments gives joy to other parts of the State, it heightens pains and sorrow in Oro Nation.
”For purposes of appointments and in the interest of justice and fairness, Boards, Agencies and Commissions are usually graded and governments ensure that the different ethnic and political configurations of the State are taken into account in the distribution of these offices.
”The Federal Character Principle of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is designed for ethnic inclusiveness for national cohesion. The same should not only be domesticated in the State, it must be generally seen to be so. Of course, this was the case until 2007.
”The Governor isn’t inclined to distributing political offices, infrastructures and industries based on ethnic groupings which constitute the State, the minimum he can do to ensure fairness is to resort to federal constituencies as the basis for the distribution of appointments and sharing of infrastructures in the State. Anything other than this will continue to result in the kind of lopsidedness and imbalance we are presently witnessing in the State.
”Nobody knows what sharing formula the Governor uses because it’s definitely not based on ethnic, federal/state constituency or Local Government spread. This is why Oro ethnic nationality or Oron federal constituency (whatever you choose to call it) hasn’t been proportionately represented in the full-time Boards and Commissions in the State.
”The recent reconstitution of some Boards tends to suggest that the Governor doesn’t reckon with Oro ethnic nationality or Oron federal constituency while making his appointments. Ordinarily, someone from Oron area should chair at least one of the aforementioned Boards.
”Each of the ten federal constituencies in Akwa Ibom State ought to take a minimum of 10% of all appointments, 10% of the chairmanship and membership of the Grade ABoards; ditto other Boards.”
Vanguard News Nigeria