State creation topped list of demands by groups from Adamawa and Taraba at Thursday’s public hearing on the review of the 1999 constitution in Gombe.
The groups wanted creation of Amana and Gongola out of present Adamawa and Mambilla out of present Taraba.
Mr. Ahmad Sajoh, the leader of the movement for Amana State, said the struggle for the creation of the state had been on for years.
He said that since 1961 when the area was moved into Nigeria from Cameroon, it had been an independent entity and it was the wish of the people to have a state of their own.
“The then Premier of Northern Nigeria, Sir Ahmadu Bello, the Sardauna of Sokoto convinced us to be part of Nigeria on the condition that the area shall be an autonomous province with a guaranteed equality of status.
“We were also promised equal treatment and equality of access to opportunities as any other Nigerian province of the time, so we are calling on the Senate to help us achieve this noble desire,” he said.
Sajo stated that the area had been deprived of the benefit of being part of Nigeria.
He said the area has the population and geographical criteria needed for a state.
“When Bayelsa was created, it had only three local government areas (LGAs), whereas we have five.
“We have a population of about 1.7 million people with 4,088 square kilometers as landmass which is bigger than Lagos State and some states in the South-East,” Sajo stated.
He commended the Senate for the opportunity, adding that dialogue remained the best option for progress.
Similarly, Mr. Salihu Wobkenso, leader for the movement for creation of Gongola out of Adamawa, said the area deserved a state of its own.
According to Wobkenso, the creation of the new state would ensure that governance is brought closer to the people.
He said that the area has nine LGAs, with a population of about 1.4 million people according to 2016 census.
“We have what it takes economically to stand as a state,” he said.
Mr. Ahmed Dahoji, leader of the movement for creation of Mambilla State, said the area had been agitating for the state for long and the public hearing was the best opportunity for the presentation.