A foremost socio-political organization, Akwa Ibom Democratic Forum (ADF) has described the recent call for boycott of the stakeholders meeting organised by Group Capt. Sam Ewang (Rtd) by the caretaker committee of All Progressives Congress in Akwa Ibom, which gave rise to the political tension in the party as morally, politically, constitutionally and logically wrong.
Recall that the caretaker committee leadership of the APC in the state led by Dr. Ita Udosen had pulled out of the stakeholders meeting organised by former military governor and national caucus member of the party in which the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Chief Godswill Akpabio was reaffirmed as the party leader in the state.
Udosen had gone ahead to call for last minute boycott of the event and further summoned the former military administrator to appear before the party for interogation.
In a press statement endorsed by the Director General of ADF, Rt. Hon. Obongemem Ekperikpe Ekpo and Secretary General, Dr. Anthony Usoro, and made available to newsman, ADF said it is sad to note that people who were duly informed and invited for the meeting with some of their inputs making the implementation matrix could turn around to castigate the convener whom they encouraged, giving the public the hypocritical impression that he (convener) acted arbitrarily.
“This type of “tortoise politics” which relies on wiles and dissembling is the reason our great party, the APC is still in the woods and lacking the ardor it mustered when debuted”.
The group regretted that the party in the state acted at the behest of one of its stakeholders whom they said, “desperately wants to appropriate the reins of the party in the state for crude selfish reasons that are antithetical to public good”.
ADF further recalled with nostalgia that Senator Akpabio was named and publicly declared as leader of APC in Akwa Ibom State on August 8, 2018 by the National Delegation of APC led by the then National Chairman of the party who was in the state to witness Akpabio’s “movement” to APC.
They further explained, “It is trite knowledge that governors are the leaders of their parties in their respective states where such parties are in control. Conversely, where a party is not in control of the State with the attendant reality of not having a governor, the highest political office holder in that State emerges naturally and seamlessly as the political leader of that party.
“In Bayelsa State, His Excellency, Timipre Sylva is the unnegotiable leader of APC in Bayelsa State, His Excellency, Rotimi Amaechi is the leader of APC in Rivers State, so it is in all other States of similar underpinning. But in Akwa Ibom State, there seems to be an unbridled and inordinate quest to change the standard to satisfy some odious cravings.
“APC does not have a governor in Akwa Ibom State, having shot itself in the foot in the 2019 election through this same putrefying rancour and acrimony. The highest political office holder is the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, who is an influential member of the Federal Executive Council. The position of APC leader in the State naturally dovetails to Senator Godswill Akpabio as Minister and member, Federal Executive Council as well as former performing governor who foisted a distinctive era in our dear State”.
The group further highlighted, “The muffled hullabaloo by a few desperate and vested interests that it should not be him is strange to sane ears and a shocking realization that hate could replace even good and logical reason.
As a political pressure/support group with undisguised interest in APC, we are conscious of the fact that unless people subsume their interests and personal ambitions under the party, the hope of the party clinching power in 2023 is farfetched”.
ADF said Senator Godswill Akpabio has the competence, capacity and experience to lead the party to victory in the State in 2023 and appealed to APC members to close ranks and extend the requisite support to him.
The group intoned that the stakeholders meeting which attracted topnotch leaders of the party and array of personalities confer acceptability and stamp of credibility on the affirmation exercise..
On the way forward the group suggested,
“To return the party footing of political vibrancy, we call on the party leadership in the State to urgently institute a process to reconcile all political actors and stakeholders, and bring them into one-fold with a new vision that would drive the dream of APC and position the party to take over power, come 2023.
ADF also used the opportunity to express gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for his exceptional and elegant performance across different sectors with the utmost desire to reposition the nation for optimal productivity.
In the same vein, they applauded Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu for his political dexterity and tremendous role as the National Leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), which has guaranteed the party stability both at the national and different states of the nation.
“We also commend in a special way, Senator Godswill Akpabio for his giant strides to economically, politically and socially stabilize the entire region of the Niger Delta as the Minister of the Niger Delta affairs. Sequel to these superfluous records of achievements, ADF credits a vote of confidence to the troika,” the group asserted.