Traditional rulers from Eket Senatorial District of Akwa Ibom State, have stated that their earlier position to support the return of Governor Udom Emmanuel for a second term is irrevocable.
The Village Heads along with their spouses who converged on Eket Local Government Council under the aegis of Conference of Village Heads stated this yesterday, Thursday during an interaction with the Governor, represented by Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon Udo Ekpenyong.
They noted that although some persons have ganged up in an attempt to hinder the Governor’s second term aspiration like was done in the case of Dr Clement Isong in 1983, they were determined to stop such ordinances.
The traditional fathers wondered why enemies of progress always attempt to cause instability in the political equation, anytime an Eket son aspires to serve the State for a second term especially as their brothers from the other two senatorial districts have served successfully.
They considered such an action a slap on Eket people even as it is against the principle of justice, equity and fair play hence they are ready to work against its repeat.
In his remark, the President, Conference of Village Heads, Etteidung Monday Etian Ekaebe stated that owing to the track record of Governor Udom Emmanuel, they were determined to stand by him to ensure he returns for a second term.
He appreciated Governor Emmanuel’s disposition to carry the Village Heads along in the scheme of things of the State, pointing out that the gesture shows his respect for the traditional institution and also offers indication that he values the role they have played in the peace mechanism of the State.
Chief Ekaebe stated that since the creation of of the State, Governor Udom’s administration stands out as the first administration which has invited Village Heads for an interface.
He assured Governor Emmanuel that Village Heads and their spouses were solidly behind him.
On his part, a Former Commissioner in the State, Sir Adasi Obolum described Governor Udom Emmanuel as a promise keeper who deserves to be supported for a second term.
While describing Village Heads as the foundation of truth and equity, the Former Commissioner added ” Truth must be respected and promoted by the traditional institution.
“History is like a beacon stone that guides. What you do may not only affect you but your generation.
“We must not allow what happened to Clement Isong in 1979 to 1983 to happen again.
” Let us learn from the past. We must be wise so that what killed our father may not kill us. We must not allow negative covenant to be established in Eket Senatorial District.
“It is an established fact that all Senatorial districts have served two terms. Why should Eket be different? Do not remove the ancient landmark.
“God is a God of Justice, equity and fair play. We will never allow an outsider cry more than the bereaved.”
On his part, the Ahta Oro VII, and Paramount Ruler of Mbo LGA, His Royal Majesty, Ovong Etim Edet Isemin who served as the Pioneer Secretary of Conference of Village Heads commended the Village Heads for buying out time for the occasion. He called on them to remain steadfast in truth and honesty.
Also speaking, the Paramount Ruler of Onna Local Government Area, His Royal Majesty, Edidem Timothy Raymond Inyang noted that his son, Governor Udom Emmanuel has performed well in office.
He stated that the acknowledgment of his performance must have informed the decision of Village Heads across the State to endorse him at the Ibom Halls ground.
The Monarch called on the Village heads to remain steadfast in their support since their words is regarded as law even as traditional fathers should be seen as men of honour and truth.
In his remark, the Chairman of Eket Local Government Area,, Rt Hon Frank Archibong noted that the disaffection against Governor Udom from those he described as detractors is because Governor Emmanuel is straightforward in the affairs of governance.
He called on everyone to use their conscience in the choice they make remembering that integrity counts.
Responding, the Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Udo Ekpenyong thanked the Conference of Village Heads for their determination to stand by their son, Governor Udom Emmanuel in his aspiration to return for a second term.
He noted that he was glad that the Traditional Fathers whom he described as custodians of history and truth have seen and applauded the Governor’s performance.
Hon Ekpenyong noted that it would be a sad history if Eket Senatorial District allows second term from a governor who performs creditably flip off their hands.
The Commissioner informed the Village Heads that Governor Udom Emmanuel has approved an increment of N3,000 in their allowances, to help in entertainment for the about 4000 Village Head in the State.
The Commissioner said the Governor has promised that their monthly salary would be increased once the ongoing federal government and Nigeria Labour Congress impasse is resolved.
Hon Ekpenyong stated that Governor Udom Emmanuel places high premium on the critical role of Village Heads in the success of his administration and requested their continuous support for Governor Udom Emmanuel to sustain the current peace witnessed in the State.