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Youths of Ini Local Government Area stormed the State PDP Secretariat on Wednesday, June 26, 2024, to present their stance on the contentious zoning arrangement for the Chairmanship position.

Led by a formidable team, the youths met with the State Chairman, Elder Aniekan Akpan, and members of the State Working Committee to reiterate the long-standing zoning practice between Zones A and B since 1999.

Debunking the claims of a few individuals from Ikpe Ward 1, who had earlier protested at the secretariat, the youths clarified that the chairmanship seat has always been rotated between the two zones, with Zone A comprising wards 1-5 and 11, and Zone B consisting of wards 6-10.

They emphasized that it’s now the turn of Zone A to produce the Chairman, and any eligible candidate from the six wards can contest.

The youths were unequivocal in their support for a credible candidate with a proven track record of development and inclusivity.

They highlighted the need for a leader who can unite the people of Ini and drive progress in the local government area. “We want a Chairman who will work for the people, not just a few individuals,” they declared.

The youths also took a swipe at the sponsors of the earlier protest, pointing out that they didn’t win any elections for PDP in their units during the last general elections. “Ask them for their unit results,” they challenged, highlighting that the ward that gave Gov. Umo Eno the highest votes is Hon. Inibehe Umah’s ward. They emphasized that those who didn’t contribute to the party’s success should not dictate its affairs.

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The youths stated categorically that those who protested at the party secretariat last week did not win elections for PDP in their units in the last general elections.

Therefore, they lack the locus standi to protest at the PDP secretariat and the House of Assembly complex.

They equally stated that the sponsor of the protest did not win any election in his unit for the party, but the party has even been so kind to them that the first rewards that came, the same unit carried Transition Committee Secretary, Transition Committee member for the ward, and Ward PA to the Governor.

Elder Aniekan Akpan, the State PDP Chairman, commended the youths for their unwavering support to the party, assuring them that he would study their position paper to ensure fairness for all.

He reiterated the party’s commitment to toeing the line of Governor Umo Eno’s leadership, emphasizing that contestants must show their track records, including their performance in the last election.

The youths’ visit to the secretariat was an evidence to their determination to shape the political landscape of Ini Local Government Area.

With their voices loud and clear, they have set the record straight and sent a strong message to those who would seek to undermine the zoning arrangement. As the political drama unfolds, one thing is clear: the Ini youths will not be silenced, and their voices will be heard loud and clear.

The youths’ position paper presented to the State PDP Chairman highlighted the following key points:

– Zoning arrangement has always been between Zones A and B since 1999
– Zone A comprises wards 1-5 and 11, while Zone B consists of wards 6-10
– It’s now the turn of Zone A to produce the Chairman
– Any eligible candidate from the six wards in Zone A can contest
– The party should prioritize a credible candidate with a proven track record of development and inclusivity
– Those who didn’t contribute to the party’s success should not dictate its affairs

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The Ini youths have set the record straight, and their voices will undoubtedly resonate in the political landscape of Ini Local Government Area.

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