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LIVING IN THE SHADOWS OF PDP: THE CASE OF AKWA IBOM APC

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LIVING IN THE SHADOWS OF PDP: THE CASE OF AKWA IBOM APC

Many adults today will recall a movie in the early 90’s entitled ‘Snake in Monkey Shadow’, where the style of martial arts displayed therein, was a mixture of both reptile and mammal attributes, making it difficult to spot the difference in tactics. In our clime, contemporarily, the opposition party in the state, The All Progressives Congress(or Confidence) has made it increasingly difficult for on-lookers to decipher their true identity and ideology, away from lurking in the shadows of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.

Away from the movement of negative elements (most of whom were the major perpetrators of and beneficiaries from the impunity in the PDP of old) from our party to theirs, they have continually relied on the crumbs from our tables- this, history bears an eloquent testimony. In 2015, the gubernatorial candidate and his running mate, all three Senatorial candidates and numerous House of Representative and State Assembly candidates of the APC, were politicians who had commenced their ill-fated aspirations in our party and upon being unsuccessful, defected. So we can safely say that the APC picked their candidates from the crumbs of PDP’s table. The poser for them is: If you had credible aspirants in your party, why pick a benched player on loan as your star player? Of course, when the elections arrived, their candidates were a walkover. The APC in Akwa Ibom should therefore publicly thank our great party for being the chief supplier of her candidates.

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In 2014, we informed the entire country that the principle of zoning (which is enshrined in our party’s constitution) was going to be the major determinant for the emergence of our candidate for the office of the Governor of our state. We received scathing attacks from the APC, particularly stating that zoning was unconstitutional and undemocratic. We ignored their ranting and continued on our assured path to victory at the 2014 nominations and subsequently, the 2015 elections. In nominating our candidate, our delegates(both statutory and ad hoc), drew from our rich history where in 1999, when we zoned the Governorship to Uyo Senatorial district, an Architect, (Obong) Victor Attah( from Uyo federal constituency) emerged; in 2007 when we also zoned the office to Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District, a Barrister, Chief Godswill Akpabio(from Ikot Ekpene Federal Constituency)was elected; so in 2015, when it was the turn of Eket Senatorial district, a top notch Banker, Mr Udom Emmanuel was the popular choice. Whereas, APC filed a challenger to Udom Emmanuel from Uyo Senatorial District, dramatically, immediately after the Supreme Court upheld the election of Governor Udom Emmanuel, the APC caucus met, shamelessly capitulated and purported to zone their Governorship candidature to Eket Senatorial District. Again, courtesy demands that they should have apologized to Akwa Ibom people for their previous misleading position and ultimately appreciated our party for always blazing the trail for good. These later day advocates of zoning owe us some accolades.

Recently, we learnt that the APC had rented for their use, our old secretariat, along Ikot Ekpene road and at the ‘commissioning’, they were rejoicing. They are reported to have said that, the house was symbolic and carried our good luck cum secret of electoral success. They quickly forgot the age long saying that, ‘where the Judge is, there his court is’. They should never forget that in life, it is usually more about the content than the container. So celebrating the acquisition of an abandoned property should not call for celebration, except for persons (failed politicians) who are satisfactorily confined to existing in the shadows of another’s success. It does not just make sense!

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While we are deeply concerned as to the amorphous identity and political ideology of the APC, which rather than being distinct, is crawling in our shadows, we advise that they emulate our party’s disposition towards quality infrastructure delivery, strong advocacy on burning state and national issues among other many positives. For example, it will be recalled that it was the strong advocacy from the PDP in the state, that demanded the appointment of an Akwa Ibom indigene as the NDDC MD, after the sack of the Bassey Dan Abia- led Board, while members of the opposition kept mum and enjoyed the crumbs that fell from the table of the Immediate past Acting MD, Mrs Ibim Semenitari.

As the 2019 general elections approach, we will love to hear the position of the APC, Akwa Ibom Chapter on the Herdsmen/Farmers crisis, Water Resources Bill and other burning national issues, not the colourless and timeworn blabs that have characterized their political communication since their inception.

Finally, like Francis of Assisi opined, “a single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows”, the sunbeam of Governor Udom Emmanuel’s divine mandate will not only drive away, but extinguish and exterminate every shadow of opposition in Akwa Ibom State.

Signed:

Comrade Ini Ememobong
State Publicity Secretary

Education

New Akwa Poly Rector resumes office, Takes over from Israel Affia

The new acting rector of Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Dr. Moses Umobong has resumed office following the expiration tenure of the immediate past rector, Dr. Israel Affia.

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New Akwa Poly Rector resumes office, Takes over from Israel Affia

Dr. Moses Umobong in a warm embrace of Dr. Isreal Afia

Dr. Moses Umobong in a warm embrace of Dr. Isreal Afia

The new acting rector of Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Dr. Moses Umobong has resumed office following the expiration tenure of the immediate past rector, Dr. Israel Affia.

At the taking over ceremony which took place at the council chambers of the institution, Ikot Osurua, Ikot Ekpene Local Government Area on Friday, saw the outgone rector handing over all the school documents at his disposal to the newly appointed acting rector.

Presenting the documents, the outgone rector, Dr. Israel Affia thanked God for taking from the beginning to the end of his tenure. Dr. Affia, who served for two terms of six years said he was happy to have finished his tenure in good health and still strong.

He noted that his position as rector of the institution was a race which he had passed through difficulties in the course of discharging his duties, adding that through the support of the Governing Council members, management staff and students he recorded successes in the institution.

According to him, “I want to thank God for the race I have just finished. I passed through a lot of blackmails, criticisms and frustrations, but God saw me through. My prayer is that God that saw me through will see my successor through.”

The two-term rector said he was leaving the institution better than the way he met it six years ago, and that he was fulfilled with his achievements. He used the ceremony to congratulate his successor, Dr. Moses Umobong on his appointment, praying God to help him succeed in his tenure even as he described him as his close friend whom he has been working together.

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In his words, “I call on everyone to rally around my successor in office. I am available for any kind of advice he may need from me. Do not make those mistakes that I made knowingly or unknowingly.” Affia however, openly opologized to people he might have steeped on toes in the course of discharging his duties and pleaded for forgiveness.

In his acceptance speech, the new acting rector, Dr. Moses Umobong said he was honoured to have been appointed by Governor Udom Emmanuel and subsequently taking over the mantle leadership position of the institution.

He commended his predecessor, Dr. Israel Affia for successfully discharging his functions measurably in the past six years and congratulated him for his stewardship in the institution and prayed God to give him good hope in his subsequent and future endeavours.

The acting rector assured all members of the polytechnic community that a new dawn has come and that his administration is not only going to adopt a new and different approach to achieving the objectives for which the institution was established, but is also poised to encourage and promote an all-inclusive governance in tandem with global practices.

Dr. Umobong emphasised that the overall aim of the approach is to relaunch the institution back into the comity of renowned and preferred polyphonics nationally and internationally.

He maintained that the leadership of the institution under his watch shall strive to priorities the welfare and security of all staff and students of the polytechnic, adding that modern and critical infrastructure and resources necessary for effective learning shall be provided through collaboration with the government and relevant organisations within and outside the State.

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Earlier in his opening remarks, the acting chairman of the Governing Council, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Dr. Samuel Edet described the day as a history making day in the institution. He congratulated the acting rector on his appointment and called on everyone to give the same support his predecessor enjoyed while in office.

The Governing Council chairman warned everyone to allow the new rector function in his capacity for the benefit of the institution, saying that if the rector his given a free hand to operate, the polytechnic will grow. He urged the people of the polytechnic to pray for the new rector to succeed, noting that the future of Akwa Ibom children is at stake if the rector fails.

The handing over ceremony was witnessed by Governing Council members, management staff, head of departments, labour leaders as well as students of Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic.

(c) EMMANUEL AKPAN

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New Year: “Akintola” Fetes Community, Doles Out Cash, Rice, Wrappers

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New Year: “Akintola” Fetes Community, Doles Out Cash, Rice, Wrappers

Hon. (DR) Samuel Edet (aka Akintola), Chairman Governing Council, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Ikot Osurua

Hon. (DR) Samuel Edet (aka Akintola), Chairman Governing Council, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Ikot Osurua

* Says He’ll do more

* As Uwem Ita Etuk Receives APC Defectors

By Kenneth Jude

Thursday January 10 will remain a memorable day for the people of Nung Udoe Ibesikpo.

It was a day their son in whom they are well pleased, Hon. (DR) Samuel Edet (aka Akintola), Chairman Governing Council, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Ikot Osurua, treated them to a new year get-together party.

As early as 9am, men, women and youths trooped excitedly into the expansive Nung Udoe Village Council Hall for an event billed to commence at 10am.

Their faces beamed with elation as they were confronted by bags of rice, wrappers of various colours and make, cash and other items to season not just the rice they were going home with, but to ensure they got the year started in a refreshing way with one of their own.

Call it a PDP event and you won’t be farther from the truth. All those that assembled for the event, in one way or the other, made it known that they are not just diehard PDP members, but vowed to vote massively for all PDP candidates in the forthcoming elections beginning from the President, Udom Emmanuel, Senator Bassey Albert and Hon. Aniekan Uko, for House of Assembly.

Setting the tone for the event, Chairman on the occasion, Professor Lawrence Etim, thanked the convener, Dr. Samuel Edet, for deeming it fit to celebrate the new year in remarkable fashion with his people. He charged others to borrow a leaf from Dr. Edet, noting that people should form the habit of sharing what they have with others and not eat alone.

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He emphasised on the virtues of giving, saying that people should endeavour to share the little of what they have with others just as Dr. Edet has done.

He prayed God to bless the donor and the beneficiaries of his benevolence so that in the nearest future, they also will give to others.

In his goodwill message, Political Leader of the area and former Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Prince Uwem Ita Etuk, described Dr. Samuel Edet as a man that loves his people. Prince Etuk said he did not hesitate to respond to his invitation given that each time he calls on him, he’s always there to support him.

The former Commissioner called on parents to encourage their children that are overseas to always come back home and celebrate with their people. He urged them to disabuse the minds of their children of the notion that they won’t be safe at home. He noted that there is no place like home, stating that Ibesikpo is safe and secure for all.

On his part, Eteidung Okon Bassey said that Ibesikpo is blessed with great men and women who are excelling in their various fields of endeavours. He called on the people to shun acts that seek to divide them and embrace unity while doing away with past quarrels.

Also speaking, Deaconess Theresa Usoro, thanked Dr. Samuel Edet for remembering his community. She prayed God to bless him more so that he’ll continue his magnanimous gestures. She used the occasion to drum support for all PDP candidates in the upcoming elections, noting that what they are enjoying today can only come from PDP

Deaconess Usoro who spoke with passion, said Governor Emmanuel must complete his eight years in office just as Uyo did with Obong Victor Attah and Ikot Ekpene with Chief Godswill Akpabio. While laying emphasis on the need for equity to prevail, she described Governor Emmanuel as a silent achiever who doesn’t sing praises of himself, yet is doing great things. She urged all sons and daughters of the area not to allow themselves to be deceived, stressing that they should support Governor Udom Emmanuel to complete his eight years in office in other to enjoy more dividends of democracy.

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The Village Youth leader, Aniefiok Akpan, called on those who are yet to collect their Permanent Voter Card (PVC) to do so, noting that it’s the instrument they’ll use in voting for all PDP candidates.

In his remarks, the convener and Chairman Governing Council, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Ikot Osurua, Hon. (Dr) Samuel Edet, thanked the people for turning out in their numbers despite a short notice. He prayed God to bless the people for responding to his invitation.

A man of few words, he urged them to vote 100 percent for PDP, adding that “what you’re seeing today is dividends of Governor Udom Emmanuel’s administration. As you vote for PDP, we’ll continue to uplift you.”

He promised a scholarship of N150, 000 (One Hundred and Fifty Thousand) to any son/daughter of Nung Udoe Ibesikpo with 3.5 Cumulative Grade Point Average (CGPA) in any institution within Nigeria. “I assure that we’ll do this yearly. This is just the beginning,” he said.

Dr. Edet also gave out N10,000 (Ten Thousand Naira) each as education support to students in higher institutions while over 20 women got monetary support to boost their businesses. He also oversaw the distribution of rice, wrappers and other items along with his wife.

The highpoint of the occasion was the defection of over 50 members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) into the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). The defectors were led by Aniema Brown who said he has been in the opposition since the days of Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN).

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Mr. Brown who regretted his years in the opposition said throughout his time in the opposition camp, he got nothing, adding that he and his party faithful have always fallen to the superior power and number of PDP members in the area.

He said that with his defection along with other members, the APC is dead and buried in Nung Udoe Ibesikpo. According to him: “I
was the number one opposition man in Ibesikpo. I brought ACN here in 2007. Udoedehe contested to be governor in 2011 and failed. Umana Okon Umana did same in 2015 and failed. I’ve not achieved anything during my years in APC. I’ll work with Uwem Ita Etuk to deliver PDP in Ibesikpo.

On one of his reasons for joining PDP, he said that those who have recently moved to the APC were the problem of PDP in the past. “Now, they have come to contaminate APC. I’m not a deceitful person. I’m here to stay,” he assured.

Speaking further, Mr. Brown said: “There’s nothing like broom here. I started opposition movement Ibesikpo, but PDP has always been bigger here. If you can’t beat them, join them. Anybody who claims to be a member of APC in Ibesikpo is fake from today.”

While guests were thrilled to a breathtaking musical performance by Friends of Martha Udom Emmanuel, the event later witnessed the the symbolic burning of brooms which is the symbol of the APC.

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Akpabio sent Assassins to kill me, Akwa Ibom Speaker Onofiok Luke insist

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Akpabio sent Assassins to kill me, Akwa Ibom Speaker Onofiok Luke insist.
…. Akpabio reacts

Akpabio sent Assassins to kill me, Akwa Ibom Speaker Onofiok Luke insist.

Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke addressing the protesting women

Akwa Ibom State Speaker, Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke while addressing women of the state yesterday who where protesting the one sided action of the state police Commissioner alleged that Senator Godswill Akpabio sent some persons to assassinate him.

“Senator Akpabio sent some persons to assassinate me yesterday, so if anything happens to me hold him responsible”.

But in a swift response, Senator Godswill Akpabio reacted through his media assistant Anietie Ekong, saying Senator Akpabio has no interest in the killing Onofiok Luke or any other Akwa Ibom person.

“For the avoidance of doubt we wish to state categorically that Senator Akpabio has not sent anyone to assassinate Hon Luke. He has no reason nor motivation to do so. The Senator will never subscribe to any plot to eliminate any Akwa Ibom son or any human being for that matter, let alone Onofiok Luke who had served him as his Personal Assistant while he was the Governor of Akwa Ibom State.” part of the statement reads.

But the Hon. Kufre Okon, Chief Press Secretary to Rt. Onofiok Luke in a statement title” There is no hiding place for Senator Godswill Akpabio ” knocks the former Governor.

Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke and Senator Godswill Akpabio

We have read Anietie Ekong’s futile attempt at disentangling Senator Godswill Akpabio from the net and web of his evil conspiracy against the person of Rt. Hon (Barr) Onofiok Luke and the Office of the Speaker of the Akwa Ibom state House of Assembly. Just like in real life, the more Senator Akpabio tries to disentangle himself, the more the net of his ungodly plans draws him in. His penchant for playing ostrich is common knowledge, but like the ostrich, he is the only one who doesn’t know that the world has a gracious view of his backside.

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By this press statement where Sen. Godswill Akpabio refuses to address the Right Honourable Speaker by his office, rather addressing him as the member representing Nsit Ubium state constituency, he has clearly shown the world that his hands are actively in the plot to destabilize the state assembly. But this hatred for Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke as Speaker is neither new nor strange, after all in June 2015, the same Akpabio did everything within and in fact beyond his powers, to stop the emergence of Rt. Hon. Luke as Speaker. He took away the clerk of the House, seized the mace, intimidated honourable members and stalled the process of proclaiming the assembly on time. Akpabio may have in his usual style chosen to suffer selective amnesia, but Akwa Ibom people and PDP faithful remember the near Golgotha experience that Rt. Hon Luke passed through to get the ticket of the PDP for a second term. Akpabio it was who funded the opposition that the speaker faced during his re-election bid and even wrote off Nsit Ubium during the elections refusing to offer any financial support for the elections as the party leader then. He even stopped the party’s financial assistance to Nsit Ubium.

As history bears testimony, God has always been on the side of Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke. He won the nomination against Akpabio’s schemes, still emerged as the Speaker against his devious plans and has remained till date the speaker of the State Assembly and by the grace of God Almighty will remain so till the end of this legislative tenure, whether Akpabio likes it or not . What the former Governor hasn’t told his aides is the reason for his annoyance with the Speaker. The latter has simply opposed the inordinate ambition of the former of claiming to be the Tinubu of Akwa Ibom state, and being the alpha and omega of the state.

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May we reiterate that the Honourable Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Barr. Onofiok Luke stands by his earlier statement on the sponsored assassination attempt on him by Senator Akpabio and at the appropriate time, will take necessary actions. The world should know that if anything untoward happens to the Speaker, Senator Akpabio and his wife should be held responsible.

We deeply sympathize with the plenty refusals Anietie Ekong and co have had to issue due to the meddlesome nature of their principal. As much as we empathize with them, we are aware that the earn their keep there.

As the days pass by, we are certain that opportunities will avail itself for us to illuminate some dark sides to the main reasons fueling the current political war in our state.
Anietie it may interest you to know that Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke knows Sen. Akpabio very well and Sen. Akpabio equally knows Rt. Hon. Onofiok Luke well.

Kufre Okon
Press Secretary to the Honourable Speaker
Akwa Ibom state House of Assembly

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