The President of the Southern Kaduna Peoples Union, SOKAPU, Jonathan Asake said the citizens of Kaduna State have finally agreed to split the state into two.
Making the development known in his presentation and defence of their memo to the constitution review committee in Kaduna, Jonathan Asake noted that both sides, infamous for incessant inter-ethnic and religious clashes for decades, explained that creating new states from the present Kaduna State would go a long way at solving the bloody violence that seemed to defy solution for a very long time.
He observed that it is the wish of the Southern Kaduna people to have a brand new constitution, not an amended one.
According to SOKAPU President, in the absence of a new constitution, the forum has come to the constitution review committee to make inputs as a people who have suffered suppression and opposition for a very long time.
He explained, “Southern Kaduna is made up of 67 ethnic nationalities spread in 13 of the 23 Local Government Areas (LGAs) of Kaduna State. It has a landmass of 26,000kmsq with an estimated population of 5.1 million. We are endowed with an educated population and with abundant natural resources.”
He further explained that the land size is greater than that of Kano state which has a landmass of 20,000kmsq, stressing that yet Kano is a state of its own with 44 LGAs.
Jonathan Asake observed that their population is greater than 21 other states of the federation, adding, “We are demanding for the amendment of the provision of section 8 of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria which makes it almost an impossible task for the creation of a new state.”
He explained that the Southern Kaduna people have been demanding a state of their own for over thirty years and Gurara State was among the 18 states proposed in the 2014 Confab report.
The President said that they are demanding the creation of the Gurara State after the amendment, pointing out that this would help in solving the incessant conflicts between our people and the other divide.
SOKAPU also asked for the removal of the Land Use Act from the Constitution and its amendment as a law, so that communities and families can have larger control of the ancestral lands.
Jonathan Asake emphasized, “We stand by all the 2014 confab report which had captured most of our demands.”
In the same vein, the Northern part of Kaduna State, under the aegis of Kaduna Development Elders Initiatives submitted a memo signed by the Senators Representing Kaduna North Senatorial Zone, Sen. Sulieman Abdu Kwari; the Senator representing Kaduna Central Senatorial zone, Senator Uba Sani; all the House of Reps members from the Northern Part of Kaduna; all members of Kaduna State House of Assembly from the northern part of Kaduna, their Chairmen of LGAs and Councillors.
Defending the memo of the group, Abdulkadir Ahmed said that they are canvassing for the creation of a new Kaduna State from the present Kaduna State and they want the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria amended to make this possible.