By Peter Duru
Senate President, David Mark, has called for power shift from the Tiv speaking area of Benue State to the Idoma area.
Mark said that the Tiv speaking area had been ruling the state since it was created about 38 years ago in 1976, adding that it was time to allow other tribes in the area to taste power.
Mark spoke at a special meeting of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Otukpo, shortly after being adopted as the sole senatorial candidate of the party in his zone during the 2015 general elections in the state.
The state, with a population of 4,253,641 was one among those created in the middle belt region of the country in 1976.
Tiv and Idoma, where Mark hails from are among the predominantly spoken languages in the state. Other ethnic groups in the state include Igede, Etulo, Abakwa, Jukun, Hausa, Akweya and Nyifon.
Represented by the Minister of Interior, Comrade Abba Moro, Mark said that he was in support of the agitation by the people of the Benue South (Idoma) that the position of the governor of the state be ceded to the area in the interest of fair play.
Traces of Igbo and other tribes are found in the boundary areas of Ebonyi and Enugu States, as in Obi and Oju Local Governments, among others.
His words: “I want to state that I am on the same page with every son and daughter of Idomaland on the ceding of the governorship position in the coming general election to the Benue South zone for the first time in the history of our state.
“I want to urge everyone of us to go about this agitation for power shift without any form of rancour and acrimony so as not to overheat the polity.
“I also want to caution that we must all work hard if the dream must be realised beacuse power is never ceded on a platter (of gold). We must work, collaborate and parley with our Tiv brothers on the matter.”
Earlier, the Chairman of the Benue South PDP Elders Committee, Chief Baba Odangla, had said that all the elders of the party in the zone had opened channels of discussions on the issue with leaders of the party in the other two zones.