Former Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu has declared his interest in the 2023 governorship contest in Enugu State, after spending more than 19 years in the Senate.
Ike Ekweremadu Joins Enugu Governorship Race
The lawmaker, who currently represents Enugu West after first being elected a senator in 2003, made his declaration at a press conference in Enugu, tagged “media consultation,” on Friday, March 11, 2022.
Ekweremadu described the ongoing debate in the state about zoning arrangement as a “travesty of politics,” insisting that it was being used by politicians in the state to garner sympathy to, in the long run, impose an unpopular aspirant on the people.
He insisted that there was no discussion anywhere in the state about zoning, declaring that those flaying the kites of zoning in the state are being economical with the truth.
The lawmaker said, “I challenge any person, who said there is zoning in Enugu politics, to say where and when it was discussed and agreed in the state. It is treachery of politics. I was never a product of zoning, and if there was zoning, I won’t be in the Senate five times.
“I had always contested and my people, during those days, elected me. The position I occupied as Deputy President of Senate was not out of zoning. When David Mark became Senate President, he wanted someone he could work with and that was how I came in.”
Ekweremadu, who hails from Enugu West Senatorial District, while deflecting the argument that it was the turn of Enugu East to produce the governor in 2023, stated that it would be unfair to return power to the area.
He said Enugu East has held the position three times through the late Chukwuma Onoh, Jim Nwobodo and Chimaroke Nnamani, adding that Enugu North had also produced governor twice in Okwesilieze Nwodo and the incumbent, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
“But Enugu West has only produced governor once in Sullivan Chime. So, where is the equity? I am strong in saying that Enugu West has seriously been marginalised in the power-sharing arrangement,” Ekweremadu added.
He, however, expressed his belief in balancing the call for zoning and equity with capacity and content to move the state forward.
Ekweremadu vowed that, if elected governor, he would not interfere with the funds of local councils, stressing that he would institute a three-tier system that would be functional and running.
He said that testimonies of his service in the Senate and the impact he made in Enugu West showed that he had done well, stressing that it was time to replicate the same in all parts of the state.
KanyiDaily recalls that Ike Ekweremadu had also called for negotiation between the South-East and Northern geo-political zone to realise the quest for producing a president of Igbo extraction in 2023.