#Confab: National Conference recommends creation of 18 states.

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In the on going National Conference, the conference have submitted a report recommending the creation of 18 new states in the
country and rotation of the office of the president.

The National Conference on Thursday adopted a recommendation
of its Committee on Political Restructuring and Forms of
Government for the creation of 18 new states in the country, as
well as for the rotation of the office of the president.
It specifically agreed that in the spirit of reconciliation, equity and
justice, an additional state should be created for the South East
zone, which currently has only five states.
If the Federal Government accepts the recommendation, the
country will have 54 states with nine in each of the six zones.
The Conference also accepted the recommendation for the rotation
of the presidency between the North and South and among the six
geo-political zones while the governorship seat should be rotated
among the senatorial districts in each state.
The Committee co-chaired by Ike Nwachukwu and Mohammed
Kumalia had presented its report on Monday.
They said the subject of state creation had remained a huge
political issue in Nigeria.

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“The Committee examined the reports of the National Political
Reform Conference and the report of the Presidential Committee on
Review of outstanding issues from recent Constitutional
Conferences 2012 (the Belgore Report) and after wide
consultations and extensive deliberations and in the interest of
equity, justices and fairness,” they added.
Some of the proposed states approved by the Confab are Apa from
Benue State, kainji from Kebbi, Katagum from Bauchi, Savannah
from Borno, Amana from Adamawa, Gurara from Kaduna, Ghari
from Kano, Etiti from South East, Aba from Abia, Adada from Enugu
and Njaba-Anim from Anambra and Imo.
The others are Anioma from Delta State, Orashi from Rivers State,
Ogoja from Cross River State, IJebu from Ogun State and New Oyo
State from the present Oyo State.
The Conference is to later determine the names of the remaining
two other states and their capitals, which are to be created in the
South-South and South West zones.

The Conference, however, noted that any new states to be created
should be economically viable or potentially viable and should
have human, natural and material resources. It also resolved
that a new state should have minimum population of one million
persons.

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It rejected an amendment that said the National Assembly by
resolution passed by a simple majority or membership should
approve the merger of states and that the merged states shall exist
as a region.

The Conference agreed that there should principle of zoning and
rotation of elective offices at the federal and state levels on the
basis of excellence, equity, gender justice and fairness.
The Committee had recommended that the Electoral Act and the
Constitution of Political Parties should provide Principle of
zoning / rotation of elective offices at the federal and state levels
on the basis of equity, justice and fairness
The Conference rejected a single term of six years and a
unicameral legislature for the country.

The Conference accepted a recommendation that there should be
quarterly question time for the President and question time for
ministers at the legislature to enhance accountability.
Meanwhile, a Civil Society Organisation delegate, Femi Falana,
opposed the adoption for the creation of 18 new states.

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“Having regard to the several resolutions of the National
Conference on the need to reduce the costs of governance, I found
the recommendation for the creation of additional 18 states rather
contradictory,” he told journalists after the plenary session.
The conference resolutions are not automatic laws and would only
be submitted to the president, who could then propose them as
bills to the National Assembly.

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