Akwa Ibom Elders Fault APC’s Claims Against Governor Emmanuel’s Victory
By Mfonobong Ukpong
Elders and stakeholders in Akwa Ibom State have described as laughable, the claims by the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) that its defeated Governorship candidate, Mr. Nsima Ekere, had ‘won’ in 26 local government areas of the state.
Addressing a press conference in Uyo on Tuesday, the Elders led by the former Military Governor of the State, Otuekong Idongesit Nkanga, urged the general public to ignore such assertion, maintaining that Governor Udom Emmanuel won convincingly and resounding during the just concluded Governorship election conducted in the state.
“Gentlemen of the Press, the March 9, 2019 Governorship and House of Assembly Elections proved one thing: Akwa Ibom people voted freedom, they voted to end the misleading belief of a single individual who had previously arrogated unto himself the sole repository of political power, knowledge and strength; they voted to enjoy the peace and security we have been enjoying for the past almost four years, they voted for development over the the selling of our commonwealth, they voted for unity and brotherhood over the forces of division and attrition; they voted for a who puts God ahead in all his deliberations, over those who put the power of the gun and bayonets in their daily engagements”.
In their statement, the elders and stakeholders drawn from across the 31 local government areas in the state called on the opposition to respect the will of the Akwa Ibom who spoke overwhelmingly through their votes which saw the reelection of the PDP Governorship candidate, Governor Udom Emmanuel for an eight year tenure of two years which would elapse in 2023. Recall that the defeated APC Governorship candidate, Nsima Ekere and the leadership of his party had in separate press briefing, rejected the outcome of the Governorship election, claiming that the party won in 26 local government areas, though they could not provide evidence to back their claim of winning in the said 26 local council areas. With their decision to challenge their defeat at the tribunal, the party (APC) would have to prove how they won in the 26 local government areas as they claim.
But reacting to the assertion by the APC, Akwa Ibom elders and stakeholders said in their press statement “we have read the laughable assertion by the APC that its governorship candidate “won” in 26 local governments of the state. May we ask if such victories were conjured in their dreams, because the reality is that Akwa Ibom State is PDP and PDP is Akwa Ibom State. While we campaigned from unit to wards, to local government areas and the entire nooks and crannies of state, selling our candidate, his superlative achievements, the peace and security we are enjoying and persuading the people not to return to the dreadful days of insecurity, politically motivated assassinations, kidnappings and the carnage of the past, and the people listened, the other side relied more on the famed “Federal Might” and the force or instruments of violence as the only means for them to win the elections”.
Making reference to a widely circulated post-mortem analysis by an APC Cheiftain Obong Dr. Godwin Noah who served as the Chairman, sub-Committee on Security in Etinan local government area on why the APC failed in the election, Air. Commodore Nkanga (rtd) noted that the election victory of Governor Udom Emmanuel was a further confirmation of the fact that the PDP is firmly rooted in Akwa Ibom.
Finally, we wish to quote from the widely circulated post-mortem analysis of the reason the APC failed woefully on March 9, 2019, by Obong (Dr.) Godwin Noah who served as Chairman, sub-committee on Security, Etinan Local Government Area APC Campaign Committee, “I knew it would be easier for the head of an elephant to pass through the eye of the needle than for our party to win the elections of the 9th of March, 2019 when we lost 29 local governments areas to PDP during the Presidential and National Assembly elections. Where did we expect to manufacture votes from?” He went on to further state thus “Also we don’t need the services of a clairvoyant to know that most if not all our candidates were not prepared for the elections. Some were mere pretenders than contenders”.
“The good people of Akwa Ibom State spoke through their votes on March 9, 2019 and unanimously made their choice known on whom they felt best represents their values, hopes, aspirations and future growth and peaceful co-existence, they voted massively for the re-election of Deacon Udom Emmanuel as their Governor. They people have spoken and their will MUST BE RESPECTED!”
Among elders and stakeholders present at the press conference include, Her Excellency, Senator Helen Esuene, Engr. Enobong Billy Etuk, Otuekong Emmanuel Ibiok, Dr. Udoma Ekarika, Chief Okpo, Prince Godwin Ntukudeh, former DG of APC Governorship campaign Council in 2015, Mr. Sony Udom among others.