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EBONYI STATE
Posted to the web: 1/30/2003 7:55:20 AM
 
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BACKGROUND INFORMATION

Historical Development: Ebonyi State was created on October 1, 1996, with Abakaliki as its capital. The state was carved out of the former Abia and Enugu states.

Eze Akanu Ibiam Roundabout, Abakaliki
Eze Akanu Ibiam Roundabout, Abakaliki

It derives its name from the River Aboine, and is located in the south eastern region of Nigeria. It is bounded to the north by Benue State, to the west by Enugu State, to the east by Cross River State and to the south by Abia State.

With a land area of about 5,935 sq. km, the state lies approximately within longitude 7°30' and 8°30'E and latitude 5°40' and 6°45'N. Ebonyi State is popularly known as the 'Salt of the Nation,' apparently because of the large deposits of salt water in the state.

Administrative Areas: There are thirteen Local Government Areas (LGAs) in the state. The state is also divided into three senatorial zones, namely, Ebonyi North comprising Abakaliki, Ebonyi, Ishielu, Ohaukwu and lzzi LGA, Ebonyi Central made up of lkwo, Ezza North and Ezza South LGAs, and Ebonyi South made up of Afikpo North, Afikpo South, lvo, Ohaozara and Onicha LGAs.

Administrative Structure: At the helm of affairs politically in Ebonyi State, is the democratically elected Executive Governor of state. He is assisted by the Deputy. Governor, the members of the State Executive Council comprising Commis sioners and the Secretary to the state government, Permanent Secretaries, Special Advises and Special Assistants.

The State Legislature, the main lawmaking body of the state, is headed by the Speaker. He is assisted by the Deputy Speaker and the Clerk of the House in the general administration of the legislature.

Each Local Government Area of the state is headed by a democratically elected Executive Chairman, assisted by a Deputy Chairman and a number of Supervisory councillors. Each Local Government area has its own legislature composed of councillors who represent the various wards making up the state.

 

A Typical Rice Mill, Abakaliki
A Typical Rice Mill, Abakaliki

In addition to the above arrangement, some rural communities have a system of communal administration under an Elders' Council. One of the members, often the eldest, is designated the community Head or Chief or Traditional Ruler.

He works with a cabinet of members who represent the various villages in the community. In some other communities, the selection of the Chief or Traditional Ruler is in accordance with their written constitution.

In all cases, each community has a Town Union or Community Development Association, which is headed by a President. The President works with a team of members chosen democratically.

Town unions represent a very important plank for community selfhelp effort in developmental activities. In some parts of the state, the age grade system of administration is used, which works handinhand with the town unions. In other parts, other traditional systems such as the titled societies {Nze na Ozo) are predominant.

 

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