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5 Cross River Reps present Bill for creation of Ogoja State

Five Federal House of Representatives members in Cross River State have presented a Bill for the creation of Ogoja State.

The Bill was presented by Hon. Godwin Offiono, member representing Ogoja/Yala Federal Constituency, during the Federal House of Representatives plenary on Tuesday, 2nd July 2024, for the alteration of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999, to create Ogoja state.

5 Cross River Reps present Bill for creation of Ogoja State
Hon. Godwin Offiono

The Bill, HB. 1555 – which scaled First Reading, was co-sponsored by Hon. Peter Akpanke, member representing Obudu/Bekwarra/Obanliku Federal Constituency, Rt. Hon. Mike Etaba, member representing Obubra/Etung Federal Constituency, Rt. Hon. Alex Egbona, member representing Abi/Yakurr Federal Constituency and Hon. Victor Abang, member representing Ikom/Boki Federal Constituency, seeks to create Ogoja state thereby increasing the number of states in Nigeria from 36 to 37.

“There shall be 37 states in Nigeria, that is to say; Abia, Adamawa, Akwa Ibom, Anambra, Bauchi, Bayelsa, Benue, Borno, Cross River, Delta, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Enugu, Gombe, Imo, Jigawa, Kaduna, Kano, KKatsina Kebbi, Kogi, Kwara, Lagos, Nasarawa, Niger, Ogun, Ogoja, Ondo, Osun, Oyo, Plateau, Rivers, Sokoto, Taraba, Yobe and Zamfara.”

The lawmakers lamented that “The general historical perspective of political development and state creation in Nigeria, it can be seen that the people of Ogoja have not been fairly treated because some provinces had already become two (2) states. Yet Ogoja, a former province was omitted and is still being integrated with Calabar.

“The people of Ogoja, who are largely homogeneous and share marked similarities in cultural heritage and ethnic affinity, have had their group identity submerged.”

The lawmakers stated that Ogoja as one of the original provinces, can only join the group of fast-paced regional growth areas when it becomes a state with all the advantages of infrastructures and institutions.

“That is when the towns of Ogoja, Obudu, Obubra, Ikom, Okundi, Bansara, Okpoma, Yahe, Wanakom, Bebi, Abuochiche, Apiapum, Utugwang, Edor, Ugep, Itigidi, Eyamoyong, Agbokim, Orimekpang, Ajasor, Mkpani, Utanag, Nko, Gakem etc, could become the epicentres of the new state, thus, galvanising unprecedented dynamism that would propel growth and development and create wealth.”

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The lawmakers revealed that, in terms of demographic consideration, manpower availability, education, the energy sector, etc, Ogoja state will be sustainable.

They prayed that;

I. Truly, Ogoja is the only province left to be transformed into a State.

II. We have demonstrated with facts and figures that the Ogoja State is as viable as any existing State;

III. The available statistics also demonstrated that the area has remained largely undeveloped.

IV. We have agreed that the destiny of the people of Ogoja can only be charted by the people of Ogoja, in a separate State;

V. The approximated geo-political boundaries of the Old Ogoja Province are clear;

VI. There is unanimity in the quest for a separate State;

VII. Through the political development of Nigeria, the people of Ogoja have made enormous sacrifices for the maintenance of peace and the territorial integrity of our Nation;

VIII. Our request seeks to permanently afford the Ogoja people the right environment for self-determination and actualisation; and

IX. We have agreed that the capital for Ogoja state should be at Ogoja.

In support of the above, the lawmaker referenced statements by former President Nnamdi Azikiwe, Former Head of State, Gen. Ibrahim Badomosi Babangida (IBB) and Former Senate President, Sen. (Dr) Joseph Wayas who in the past have agreed on the need for another state to be created from the present day Cross River due to its landmass and Human Resources (HR).

The proposed Ogoja State boasts a population of two million, five hundred and ninety-four thousand (2,594,000) inhabitants spread across 12,158 sq km.

5 Cross River Reps present Bill for creation of Ogoja State

5 Cross River Reps present Bill for creation of Ogoja State

5 Cross River Reps present Bill for creation of Ogoja State

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Frank Ulom
Frank Ulom
Frank Ulom is an experienced Journalist, Blogger and Writer with several years of experience. His stories are based on community development and have brought positive change across board.

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