by crossriverwatch admin
The Northern Senatorial district of Cross River State is ready and united to produce the next governor of the state come 2015 as it is its turn to occupy the number one position of the state.
Dr. Mathias Oko Offoboche, the deputy governor of the erstwhile Cross River state between 1979 and 1983 said there is no doubt that it is the turn of the northern district of the state to occupy the position since the southern district of the state had occupied the position for eight years and the central has taken its chance with the emergence of Senator Liyel Imoke as governor of the state for two tenures.
Offoboche who is the political leader of northern senatorial district told CrossRiverWatch in his country home in Ogoja on Monday that he convened a meeting of potential governorship aspirants and stakeholders in Ogoja over the weekend to seek ways of ensuring a peaceful transition of power from the central senatorial district to the northern district in 2015.
“My friend, you needed to be there to see the enthusiasm and readiness on the faces of the people in the meeting. When I asked the question if the north is ready to produce the governor of the state in 2015, the thunderous shout of yes! almost brought the walls and roof of Ogoja Council hall down”.
He said speculations that the pronouncement by Senator Imoke in August 2012 that the north would produce the governor in 2015 was a political statement to fool the north to go to sleep as unfounded and cheat propaganda by those who want to create bad blood in the state.
“Imoke is a good man and I see so much of his father’s forthrightness in him; he said to me go and unite your people and I will give you governor and I have no reason to doubt him. He has never lied to me before”.
He said the meeting was attended by several illustrious sons of Ogoja who are qualified and capable of occupying the post of governor of the state and he is certain that when one of them emerges, the rest will join hands and work with him to develop the state.
“John Odey, Fidel Ugbo, Rose Oko, Mike Ania, Venatius Ikem, Paul Ada, and a whole lot of them attended the meeting without being coerced and the discussion was lively and purposeful. Somebody said Julius Okputu is interested and I said ‘come and join us’ and I am confident that we will do it peacefully”.
Dr. Offoboche also dismissed speculations that rancor and political animosity would disintegrate the leaders of the north and contenders for the post of governor such that somebody from the south would emerge in the race as baseless.
“When in 1978 the NPN zoned the post of president of this country to the north, eighteen people contested and Alhaji Shehu Shagari emerged and after that the rest worked with him. There is no political contest where only one person would be the contender then where is the democracy”.
He said no matter the number of contenders, there would be political measures and yardstick to be used to ensure that only one person emerges peacefully.
“The floor is open for all those interested to aspire and there is nothing wrong with that but as they proceed, some their pockets may go dry, some would see they have no supporters, some would read and be tired and step aside and only the strong will continue”. Offoboche said.
According to the octogenarian, politics is all about development and not self interest and so after one person has emerged the winner, the rest have to queue behind him and let him succeed for the good of the state.
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