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2023 Guber: A’Ibom NASS Caucus Endorse Pastor Umo Eno

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The Akwa Ibom State Caucus in the National Assembly has declared their unwavering support for the 2023 governorship aspiration of Pastor Umo Eno.

The legislators made their position known during a consultation visit on them by the seasoned entrepreneur and leading Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP) aspirant which took place at the Abuja residence of Senator Akon Eyakenyi.

In a motion moved by Hon (Dr.) Henry Archibong, and seconded by Hon Nsikak Ekong, the members representing Itu/Ibiono, and Ikot Ekpene Federal Constituencies respectively, the lawmakers unanimously endorsed Pastor Eno as their candidate for the 2023 governorship election.

They noted that their decision to support Pastor Eno is premised on his strong believe for inter-governmental collaboration and partnership, as well as their believe in the Completion Agenda of Governor Udom Emmanuel.

In her remarks, the host, Senator Eyakenyi, thanked the team for the visit, stating that it was a honour for the Umo Eno Campaign Organization to visit and consult them in Abuja.

“We feel honoured to have you come to consult us officially. We are with you and for you. We are the people’s representatives. We have control over the delegates which is the first bridge to cross. If you have the support of the National Assembly caucus, go to sleep, victory is yours. We will follow you till the end. Your victory will be clean and landslide,” she assured.

Senator Eyakenyi advocated for the state to recognize the benefits of having ranking legislators in the National Assembly, and appealed that lawmakers seeking return tickets in the 2023 elections should be encouraged.

“Ranking of Legislators is important because it affords one the opportunity to have leverage and attract more democratic dividends back to their constituencies and State. Let us encourage those who want to go back. The benefits are enormous for the state,” she said.

Addressing the Caucus, Pastor Eno thanked the lawmakers for their support and solidarity, stating that his emergence as the preferred successor is simply a product of God’s grace, which, according to him, has made it possible for senior citizens and political leaders in the state to rise and serve as destiny helpers towards the realisation of his 2023 governorship project.

“I am humbled by the calibre of people here. I thanked God who found me through His Excellency, Governor Udom Emmanuel. The job ahead of us going into the next phase is crucial. We must be able to convert our state assets towards job creation to stem the tide of unemployment. The general national unemployment figures are not looking good. In Akwa Ibom State, agriculture will serve as low hanging fruits that will create quick impact which we will explore.

“You need a Governor that you can advise, who will listen to you, listen to the people and also respect you. I do not know everything that is why I will need your advice and support. I am not one of those who know it all. I will create a partnership that works between the executive branch of government and the legislature for the good of our people,” he stated.

Pastor Eno who pledged to run an all inclusive government, said Small and Medium Enterprise, (SME’s), remains the engine room of any economy, promising to reposition agriculture to play its major role as one of the biggest employer of labour.

Reiterating the need to further the peace currently enjoyed in the state, the accomplished entrepreneur assured that the legacies of the Governor Udom Emmanuel led administration would be protected.

“Stand by me, give me your shoulders so that I can ride on your shoulders. My aspiration is not an ambition but a call to serve. With your support we will make Akwa Ibom State better,” he assured.

Introducing the aspirant, the Director-General, Umo Eno Campaign Organization, Amb Assam Assam (SAN), said endorsement by any caucus is a great political capital in any democracy the world over.

“You are not just representing the people. You are speaking for the people. Today, we stand at a threshold of history. Akwa Ibom caucus have done well and would have done more if the country had a PDP government at the centre,” he noted.

He therefore solicited for their endorsement towards the realisation of the Umo Eno 2023 Governorship project.

Also speaking, the National Chairman, Maintain Peace Movement, (MPM), Barr. Emmanuel Enoidem, thanked the lawmakers for their show of patriotism, love and oneness, stating that their endorsement as legislators is symbolic and of great significance.

“Parliament is the major ingredient of democracy. Without parliament there is no democracy. We thank you for your support and I can assure you all that with Pastor Umo Eno as Governor, the future of Akwa Ibom State is guaranteed and prevailing peace will be sustained.

Goodwill messages were received from Senator Effiong Bob, Senator Emmanuel Ibok Essien, Chairman of the Akwa Ibom State Caucus in the 7th National Assembly, Senator Aloysius Etok, leader, House of Representatives Caucus, Rt Hon Francis Uduyok, member representing Abak Etim Ekpo Ika Federal Constituency, Hon Aniekan Umanah, Deputy Speaker, Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Rt Hon Felicia Bassey, and Dean, College of Commissioners and Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Sir Monday Uko, among others.

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Status Quo: OBA, Akwa Ibom Absalom on a free fall

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The rebellious disposition of Obong Bassey Albert (OBA) is congenital. His constant biting of the fingers that fed him is a pronounced character that defines his person. That was why the former Governor of Akwa Ibom state, Sen. Godswill Akpabio in 2015 referred to Bassey Albert as the biblical Absalom. Remember, OBA was his Commissioner for Finance, but fell out of the grace of his master when he chose the path of the biblical Absalom by betraying his political father. He literally bit the fingers that fed him. He was cursed and declared that he would never have a chance to rule in Akwa Ibom state. Read the story in the link: http://saharareporters.com/2014/07/21/2015-gov-akpabio-curses-guber-aspirants-akwa-ibom-pronounces-death-all-his-opponents .

Akpabio’s anger against OBA started when he(OBA) defied the zoning arrangements of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) wherein they zoned the governorship seat in 2015 to Eket senatorial district. Bassey Albert who hails from Uyo senatorial district decided to aspire as governor against the decision of the party. This implies that OBA’s disloyalty to the party that made him didn’t start today. He is known for fighting his fathers and benefactors: A rebel in the similitude of Lucifer, just like Akpabio addressed him in 2015.

The zoning arrangement in Akwa Ibom state is a long standing one, and power has always been rotating within the 3 senatorial districts of the state. Obong Victor Attah in 1999 took the turn of Uyo Senatorial District, Senator Godswill Akpabio came to power in 2007 for Ikot Ekpene senatorial district, and in 2015, it was the turn of Eket senatorial district, when Mr Udom Emmanuel as at that time came into the political picture for Eket senatorial district. But like a rebel, OBA rose against the long standing political tide. It was at this point that Akpabio called him Absolom, one of David’s sons who rose against his father.

But out of pity and much pleas, OBA was offered the Uyo Senatorial District ticket, panel beaten and “packaged” to the Senate.

Today, the same scenario is playing out. In his usual character of rebellion, he is standing against the tide, the same tide that packaged him in 2015 just to give him a soft landing.

First, he started by agitating for the right of consideration for the governorship seat on the ground that the party promised to give him the party ticket.
If the party had promised him the governorship ticket, why did he not decline to take the senatorial tickets in 2015 and 2019?

Second, as if that is enough, he is sponsored series of attacks on the person of the governor of the state and the Peoples Democratic Party, the party that made him who he is today. He attacks party stakeholders and call everyone names. Is this the type of governor Akwa Ibom people need?

Now, he is conniving with Ephraim Inyang, who has turned himself into the Judas Iscariot of our generation, to attempt to truncate a very peaceful and credible ward congress conducted in the state.

This is exactly what Absalom did. He raised an army against his father. He betrayed his father and the people of Israel.

OBA and Ephraim Inyang have risen against the fingers that fed them and brought them to prominence. They are fanning the embers of disloyalty and destruction of the party that made them. What a height of betrayal?

Finally, on the status quo issue, the PDP should put their house in order, stand with the governor and mobilize the delegates to support Umo Eno, and OBA will be beaten hands down.

His last move to seek court injunction to stop the ad-hoc delegates from voting is aimed at sending fear to weak hearts. This alone should boost the people’s morale to stand against his disloyalty to the party. The party should massively vote him out of the race. The PDP is too big for one person to destroy.

Richard Peters

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Alleged Electoral fraud: Prof. Uduk’s lawyer plans to abandon case

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If the recent absence of Prof Uduk in court is anything to come buy, indications are that the defence lawyer, Abasidiong Ekpeyong is planning to prevent the prevalence of justice by frustrating the conclusion of the trial, having exhausted and exploited all available legal tactics at his disposal.

All clues point to the assumption that he connived with his client not to appeal in court at the next adjourned date of 18th Wednesday where he will be expected to open his defence in the trial that has been delayed by the defence team unwilling to open his defence for a period of five months.

It will be recalled that INEC’s prosecution counsel had closed its case since on the 27th of January after calling five witnesses some of whom the defence lawyer could not cross examined and had tendered several documentary evidences to prove the criminal attempt to up-turn the North West senatorial election in the 2019 election.

The no case submission filed, had been Dismissed at the on the 23rd of April sitting by the erudite Justice Bassey Nkanang for lacking merit.

At the last court sitting, the defence lawyer tested the waters when he deliberately failed to come to court with the defendant, Professor lgnatius Uduk who ought to be in court at every court sitting, given that the case is a criminal trial.

That the defendant will always be in court was one of the conditions for the bail granted him that he will make himself available throughout the duration of the trial. But at the last court sitting, the accused initially was not in court when the case was called and the matter had to be stood down for professor Uduk to be brought to the court.

It would be recalled that the professor was compelled to appear in court only after a bench warrant was issued by the court for his arrest after evading Court summons and was hiding in Abuja.

The reluctant defence lawyer pleaded to be given more time and asked for any date in the month of June but the court order for both counsel to choose a date within the next ten days.

Even though the defence counsel’s dairy was free within the period, yet he refused and when both counsel could not agree on a day, the court fixed on the 18th of May for the defence to open his case and matter adjourned.

The defence lawyer and the accused may not appear in court on Wednesday as being contemplated and this may lead to the revocation of the bail earlier granted professor Uduk by the court or in the alternative, he will appear but his lawyer will not come to court to avoid opening his defence and thus compel the court to adjourn the matter again to frustrate the case.

The people of Akwa lbom state and Nigerians are waiting the outcome of this case whether the justice Bassey Nkanang will courageously do justice and it will be served timely and irrespective of position in status of the parties before the court.

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GOV EMMANUEL ADVISES WARD COUNCILLORS TO BE AGENTS OF PEACE AT GRASSROOTS LEVEL

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Governor Udom Emmanuel has called on Ward Councillors in Akwa Ibom State to be agents of peace and discipline expected of them as leaders given the task of community development

Governor Emmanuel made this known while addressing ward Councillors during a two- day Leadership Retreat, with the theme ‘Leadership for Service and Victory’ on Sunday, at Ibom Icon Hotel and Golf Resort Uyo.

The Governor said the essence of organizing the retreat for the 368 Ward Councillors in the State has been a fulfilment of his promise to prepare them with requisite leadership skills for an effective interface with the rural communities.

“The reason we pass this knowledge is that you can also use it to build your families because in your homes, families and wards, you are a leader and once you are a leader there are certain things expect of you.

“Some of you lead groups, committee, communities and you must provide leadership at wards, at any level that you have an opportunity you must provide leadership. I want you to see this as an opportunity to lead a good life”, the governor stated.

Governor Emmanuel harped on the need for Ward Councillors to inculcate loyalty as an essential leadership virtue which can stand them out in future.

Mr Emmanuel who gave reasons for neglect of the Local Government Areas, principally due to poor funding, however advocated the need for Local Government Areas to access more revenue allocation from the federal government, stressing that adequate funding and attention will serve as a major support to build thY oue rural communities.

“You need to know how much you get as a Local Government, I am one of those who still emphasize that if the grassroot must be built we need to look at the revenue allocation, take more from the center and give it to the grassroot because they are closer to the people so that we can build a stronger society”

The Chief Executive however thanked the facilitators Peculiar People Management ( PPM) in conjunction with Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, for organizing the retreat and also commended the orderliness of the ward Councillors during the retreat.

Earlier in his remarks, Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem, described the councilors as leaders in their various wards and urged them not to give themselves to prejudice or allow it influence their official conduct at any time.

Dr. Ekuwem, further enjoined the councillors to be self- confident in themselves and exhibit a high sense of discipline without inferiority complex so as to lead boldly by example.

Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Frank Archibong in his welcome remarks thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for keeping to his promise with the Councillors and called on the 368 councillors who participated to make the retreat count in order to replicate the knowledge gained at the grassroot level.

In a goodwill message, the immediate past Commissioner for Lands, Pastor Umo Eno, commended Governor Emmanuel for organizing the retreat which he noted will build capacity and ideas of the ward leaders and empower them to harness resources towards the development of the rural communities.

Also in a goodwill message, the National Coordinator, Maintain Peace Movement (MPM) Barr. Enoidem, urged councillors to take advantage of the retreat as leaders at their various communities and apply the knowledge gained positively as they have the onerous task to select leaders that will sustain the legacy of the present administration.

The Chairman of ALGON, Engr. Iniobong Robson, thanked Governor Udom Emmanuel for keeping to his promise in approving the retreat for Councillors in the state.

One of the resource persons, Dr. Maxwell Ubah, spoke on the importance of leadership and the four principles of leadership, pointing out that leadership has a generational impact and it is about securing the future of the next generation.

Certificate of participation and souvenirs were presented to all ward Councillors.

Media Unit
Govt House,Uyo
15/05/22

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