. Akwa Ibom APC leaders during a rally
* Says its supporters won’t cause mayhem during Saturday LG elections
By Effiong WILLIAM
The opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) in Akwa Ibom State has assured Governor Udom Emmanuel that its supporters will not resort to violence or cause mayhem during the local council elections scheduled to hold through the state on Saturday December 2.
Reacting to an alarm on Saturday by the state government, through the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Ekerete Udoh, that it had uncovered a plot by the opposition to employ people from other parts of Nigeria to disrupt the local council elections, the APC said it has no plans to foment trouble during the elections.
The APC had, in a statement on Monday by its spokesperson, Edet Bassey, decried the earlier statement by the Akwa Ibom State Government, insisting that Governor Udom Emmanuel and his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), may have been surprised by the large crowd that attended its campaign flag-off recently and the tumultuous reception accorded APC in the state that they had insinuated that the crowd was made up of people from neighbouring states”.
Below is the full text of the APC statement.
RE: PLOT TO DISRUPT LOCAL GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS IN AKWA IBOM STATE UNCOVERED
We have read with dismay and consternation a Press Release issued by Mr. Ekerete Udo, Chief Press Secretary and Senior Special Assistantto the Governor in respect of the above subject matter. Though no specific mention was made of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the said Press Release, it is evident to every discerning mind that the statement is a thinly-veiled allusion to our party, which is undoubtedly the biggest alternative party in the state.
It is worrisome and regrettable that such a reckless, callous and loose statement of wide generalization could stem from the Governor and Government of Akwa Ibom state supposedly the bastion of authority of all peoples of the state notwithstanding their political leanings. It is pertinent to remind the Governor that we are all Akwa Ibom citizens in the first instance before APC or PDP. It is ridiculous to think that APC can descend from the height of support it enjoys from its teeming supporters to contemplate violence.
We understand that the governor and his party had been so flummoxed by the mammoth crowd that attended our campaign flag-off and the tumultuous reception accorded APC in the state that they had insinuated that the crowd was made up of people from neighbouring states.
Not done with such baseless and spurious allegation, the Government of Akwa Ibom state has gone further to step-up the ante of falsehood against the APC by alleging that “The Government of Akwa Ibom State has uncovered a plot by elements allied with the opposition in the state to bring people from other parts of the nation to disrupt and cause the breakdown of law and order during the forth-coming Local Government Council elections in the state”. Deacon Udom Emmanuel may wish to know that our party will never, in whatever guise or manner, resort to violence or any ungodly and unconventional means that will cause pain, destruction and death to our kith and kin.
The PDP is infact crying wolf where there is none. In the contrary, what Government and the PDP are alleging is their stock in trade and accustomed modus operandi for their fraudulent electoral successes. We recall that strange persons were imported into the state during the 2014 PDP Governorship nomination primaries, handsomely rewarded and issued tags bearing names of persons on the party delegate list. It also common knowledge that the government of Deacon Udom Emmanuel is a product of violence purchased with the blood of innocent citizens of the state. Akwa Ibom people are aware of how the “Divine Mandate” was born.
APC will dare not travel that route (even at the Local Government election) knowing the burden of credibility it has imposed on the Government of Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel.
The truth is that PDP is scared of the growing strength of our party. They are conscious of the massive support APC enjoys from a broad spectrum of Akwa Ibom people. APC has no plans or intention to foment trouble or cause mayhem in the course of the December 2nd Local Government elections in the state. Rather we have consistently raised alarm on the need for a level playing ground for all the candidates to the election. APC has gone to court to challenge all the actions of the Electoral umpire, the PDP and government of Akwa Ibom state that are designed to manipulate the electoral process with a view to giving the PDP an undue advantage over candidates of other political parties.
One of the tenets of the Change Mantra is a free, fair and credible election. Since assumption of office, President Muhammadu Buhari (GCFR) has not interfered in any elections conducted across the country. This has given the electorate the right and privilege to choose candidates of their choice as was the case in the recently concluded Governorship election in Anambra state.
It is obvious that the “uncommon era of impunity and brash rule by iron fist” is gradually grinding to a halt. Make no mistakes, the people are ready to take back their government at the Local Government level and ensure bottom to top approach to development. Akwa Ibom people want to feel the impact of the funds appropriated by the Federal Government to Local governments in the state. APC is asking for nothing other than for AKISIEC to provide a level playing field for all the contestants and to conduct an election guided by the rule of law otherwise APC shall resist and or reject elections not conducted in-tandem with the law or election results not published or announced as specified by extant laws governing Local Government elections.
Edet Eyo Bassey (Esq.)
State Publicity Secretary,
All Progressives Congress.
Akwa Ibom Chapter.
26th November 2017