The planned showdown between southern and northern delegates at the ongoing National Conference over reshaping the power configuration in the country, turned into an anti-climax, yesterday, after conference chairman, Justice Idris Kutigi ruled against reversion of positions adopted last week.
The planned confrontation followed the mobilisation by Northern delegates for a repeal of the conference’s position on the creation of new states and local governments as a way of balancing the superiority enjoyed by the North.The stage for battle was set as the conference resumed, yesterday, after the opening prayers when Alhaji Muhammad Maigari Dingyadi, a delegate from Sokoto State raised objections to the procedures used in adopting the resolution on the creation of new states.
According to him, the procedures were full of errors. While he was still on his feet that the decision on local governments was faulty, the hall was enveloped in shouts “No, no,’ ‘name the page properly. ’With their voices almost being drowned out, some northern delegates hinted on crippling the conference by walking out if their position on state creation and local governments were not met, insisting that the only thing the conference could do was to set the criteria for state creation and not to announce those that should be created.In his contribution, a delegate on the platform of Elder statesmen category, Abdullahi Ohoimah called for the creation of another state from the Central Zone.
He said that the zone was cheated in the list produced last Thursday. A delegate representing North Central Zone, John Dara explained that the proposed Kainji State is composed of emirates from Niger and Kebbi, with the bulk of the new state in Niger, which explains why the proposed state is in the North Central. He added that there will be no additional state from the North Central.
In his contribution, a delegate representing the Nigeria Labour Congress, NLC, Comrade Issa Aremu kicked against the proposal for new states, saying that the present ones were not viable, not implementable and would make a mockery of the conference if approved at the end of the day.There were shouts of “Point of Order” which forced Aremu to stop