Ebonyi Community Issues Strong Warning to Senate Against the Relocation of Federal College of Education

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Ankrah Shalom

The indigenes of Isu Okoma community, Onicha Local Government Area of Ebonyi State are currently protesting against Senator Sam Egwu over his alleged moves to change the location of the recently approved Federal College of Education.

Reports gathered that the College is one of the six recently approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

The Isu community has accused Egwu of instigating a move for the relocation of the College out of their place.

They urged the National Assembly, particularly the Senate Committee on Ethics and Privileges, to disregard the petition laid before the red chamber.

In a press statement issued after its national emergency meeting held in Enugu, made available to journalists and signed by the leader of the community in diaspora who choose to be called “the Chief servant”, Chief Anthony Anoke, and other members, Dr Ikechukwu Egbo, as well as Mr Frank Ngozi Omah, they slammed Egwu for seeking to change the location of the Federal College of Education Isu to his village in Ebonyi North.

Anoke maintained that “the action of distinguished senator Sam Egwu and his faceless group who are challenging the wisdom of Mr. President by writing baseless petition against the location of the institution amounts to selfishness, greed and desperation to have more institutions and projects to the Ebonyi North Senatorial zone.

“We urge the Nigerian Senate Committee on Ethics and privileges to disregard the petition as it amounts to challenging the authority and wise decision of Mr president, who after due investigations and consultations rightly approved Isu as the best site.

“The entire people of Isu Okoma kingdom further appreciate and thank President Muhammadu Buhari for his decision in approving the establishment of the College in Ebonyi State, especially in Isu, Onicha Local Government.

“The community equally expressed its profound gratitude to the Federal Ministry of Education for letting justice, equity and fairness count in the selection of Isu as the host community of the new college”.

The Chief servant, Anoke noted that it was imperative for them to correct the erroneous impression the petition submitted may have created in the minds of the Senate and the people at large.

According to him, “Onicha Local Government Area remains the largest Local Government Area in Ebonyi state with a population of over 400,000 people, with landmass, education and other several endowments yet the community is classified as the disadvantaged council area in the state.”

Anoke said “it is important to alert the National Assembly, especially the Senate committee on ethics and privileges that the Ebonyi North Senatorial Zone, where the petitioners are claiming that the Federal College of Education should be relocated to, comprise of Abakaliki, Izzi, Ebonyi and Ohaukwu Local Areas which primarily hosts the Ebonyi State Capital Territory.

“To put the records straight, in Ebonyi we have Afikpo block from Abia State, and Abakaliki block from Enugu State; in the Abakaliki block, we have the state capital territory with all the Federal and state infrastructural projects.

“We would also want to draw the attention of the National Assembly and the Senate Committee on Privileges that first, Abakaliki the Capital of the State is in Izzi land (Ebonyi North). The Federal Raw Materials Research Centre is located in Ebonyi North; the Ebonyi State University is located in the Ebonyi North Zone.

“All the State Headquarters of all the Federal Ministries and Agencies are located in Abakaliki, Ebonyi North Zone. The Ebonyi State School of Health Technology is located in Ohaukwu LGA, the Same Ebonyi North. The Federal University Ndufu Alike, FUNA is also located in the same Abakaliki block. The Open University of Nigeria has its Ebonyi Centre here in Abakaliki, the same Izzi Land and also Ebonyi North.”

They thanked President Mohammadu Buhari, the honourable ministerq of education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, Science and Technology, Dr Ogbonnaya Onu and His Excellency Engr. Chief Dave Nwaeze Umahi, Senator Michael Ama Nnachi and Hon Engr Makwe Livinus Makwe, MHR. “for their cooperation in making this project a reality. The community has also made available a large expanse of land for immediate take off and further assured the State and the federal government maximum cooperation.

“We strongly believe that as leaders, we should at all times endeavor to rise above clannish tendencies and promote peace, equity and unity in our dear State. We should be grateful that out of the five States in the South East, Ebonyi State was chosen to locate this educational institution”.

He further reminded Senator Egwu that “for 8 years he governed Ebonyi, he did not bring any project to Isu even though we gave him the highest number of votes in the elections that brought him to power.”

Chief Anoke said the action of the Senator Sam Egwu “amounts to one carrying an elephant on the head and still chasing rats with his legs. He should honourably withdraw the petition to avoid opening wounds as our people are not happy with him for neglecting the community for eight years of his administration with no single project in the Isu community.”.

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