One of the 31 local government areas of Akwa Ibom State,Eastern Obolo,has declared that it deserves to be given a single constituency seat in the state House of Assembly, saying that the joint ticket it is sharing with Ikot Abasi LG, has not helped the development of the council.
The community, which is one of the oil producing communities in the state made the call even as it demanded for the creation of Akwa Ibom State Oil Producing Communities Commission.
This was disclosed last Thurday in Uyo by the President of a socio-cultural organisation in the Council, “Obolo me Obolo”, Mr. Emmanuel Paul while speaking with newsmen arguing that before now the LG had enjoyed single constituency ticket in the then Cross River State Assembly and in Akwa Ibom shortly after its creation in 1987, wondering why it is now sharing a state constituency seat with Ikot Abasi Local Government.
And in buttressing his assertion said, “Another thing we want to mention is that as a child, our royal father here had represented us in the then Cross River State House of Assemby (Eastern Obolo) not (Eastern Obolo with Ikot Abasi). Hon. Dan James represented only Eastern Obolo in Akwa Ibom State after the creation of the state. The question is how come now we are sharing a state constituency ticket with Ikot Abasi LG. Eastern Obolo deserve a single seat in the state House of Assembly.”
He also appealed to Governor Udom Emmanuel to create Akwa Ibom Oil Producing Communities Commission stating that other states in the Niger Delta region have started reaping the benefits of such a Commission.
” Our appeal is that Governor Udom Emmanuel should create an oil producing community Commission for Akwa Ibom State. Delta State has it, other states in the Niger Delta region have theirs and they are reaping the results of it already.
“If we have an oil producing Commission that is funded by government most of the demands will now be channeled through the Commission. We need a director and a state representative in NDDC” he said.
He decried the level of marginalization of the local government in the area of appointments by the federal government agencies and multi national companies operating in the area, saying people from other local governments come in to claim Eastern Obolo.
“If you go to Total Nigeria Limited, ExxonMobil, Shell Petroleum Development Company and others, you will see indigenes from other local governments claiming they are from Eastern Obolo while our land is being destroyed every day by gas flaring” he said