House Of Assembly PDP Primaries: Akpabio Suffers Defeat, Esuene, Okon Umana, Effiong Bob, Others Rejoice
The Chairman of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) Governors Forum and
governor of Akwa Ibom State, Chief Godswill Akpabio suffered massive
defeat in his party's last Saturday's House of Assembly primaries.
According to our investigation, the governor who on the eve of the
primaries had held a closed door meeting with his aspirants of choice and
was sure of grabbing 26 of the 31 tickets in the state suffered a huge
shock as most of the candidates he supported were roundly defeated or
out-played at the primaries.
Most painful to Akpabio is the fact that his close aides have been
fingered to have been the architects of his defeat in some of the state
constituencies. In Abak, where the present Commissioner of Information,
Aniekan Umanah hails from, Akpabio is said to have anointed one Emmanuel
Udosen, a lawyer, who is said to be married to his cousin as the next
member of the state house of assembly.
Aniekan Umanah was given the task of telling the incumbent, Mr. Friday
Iwok, to step down for Udosen. He was also mandated to pay each of the
delegates the sum of three hundred thousand naira as transport and welfare
allowance. But to the chagrin of the governor, Umanah, instead of sticking
to plan, failed to deliver the message to Iwok and paid the delegates one
hundred thousand naira only on behalf of Udosen and pocketed the rest.
Friday Iwok being a politician, who knows his onion, capitalized on the
ineptness of Umanah and is said to have approached the delegates and paid
them two hundred thousand naira each in exchange for their votes. At the
end of the poll in Abak, Iwok was returned as the Party's flag bearer for
the forth-coming general election. The governor is said to be highly
disappointed in Aniekan Umanah who has been described by many as an
opportunist and a self-centered political neophyte for truncating his
plans to install his in-law as the representative of the Abak state
constituency in the House of Assembly.
Unlike Abak, where the governor was not in support of the return bid of
the member of the state constituency; Ayang Akanimo Ayang, the member
representing Eket state constituency in the House of Assembly had the
blessings of Governor Akpabio and was tipped to retain his seat in the
However, at the end of the primaries in Eket, the returning officer,
Ekpong Edemumoh declared Mr. David Lawrence, a onetime vice chairman of
the council as person who will represent the Party in the forth-coming
house of assembly. According to a delegate who spoke on the condition of
anonymity, the defeat of Ayang does not have anything to do with the
governor; rather he is the architect of his own down fall. Ayang according
to our source is one politician who failed to empower his people and
abandoned everybody that was instrumental to getting into the House of
Assembly in 2011.
A protégé of the senator representing Eket senatorial district, Senator
Helen Esuene, Ayang failed to realize that there will be a payback time
when he will need the support of the people. He concentrated on amassing
wealth for himself and did not attract any tangible people-oriented
project to the state constituency. These accounted for the massive
resistance against his return to the House. Even when the Party's appeal
committee ordered a rerun of the primary election in Eket state
constituency, it was manifestly clear that Ayang who lost to David
Lawrence by just a vote was in for a worst defeat as the elders of Eket,
like one time minister of housing, Chief Nduese Essien, Senator Helen
Esuene, General Anthony Etukudoh, Professor Etie Ben Akpan and others had
mobilized delegates to cast overwhelming votes in support of David
Lawrence. This accounted for his chickening out of the rerun, conceding
In Nsit Ibom state constituency, Akpabio's candidate of choice and former
state chairman of the Trade Union Congress (TUC), Akamba Awah was defeated
by the incumbent chairperson of the local government council, Mrs. Mfon
Ekong who is said to be a political ward of former secretary to Akwa Ibom
state government, Umana Okon Umana who only last Friday defected to the
All Progressive Congress (APC) in a carnival like rally attended by the
top hierarchy of the Party at the national level. Though a former military
administrator of the state, a strong follower of Akpabio and director
general of Udom's campaign organization, Wing Commander Idongesit Nkanga
hails from Nsit Ibom and was strongly in support of Awah, he could not
however save him from defeat.
The drama in Nsit Ubium state constituency did not come as a surprise to
many political observers in the state. According to a source who was a
statutory delegate at the primary election, the stakeholders were out to
humiliate Akpabio and this they did using people who were closed to the
Though the Party confirmed that there was no election in Nsit Ubium state
constituency as there was wide spread violence purportedly orchestrated by
political thugs and cultists hired by the chairman of the council,
Ekpedeme Akpan, in support of one of the candidates, Onofiok Luke. The
violence took place right under the noses of the police officers of the
base where the election was conducted and other security agents.
In fact, the election venue was highly militarized to intimidate the
delegates of other contestants. A source who hails from Nsit Ubium claimed
that some days before the primary election, which was a straight contest
between Ekokoi Solomon, a lawyer and university lecturer and the incumbent
member, Onofiok Luke, who was a protégé of Akpabio until he fell out with
the governor on account of what has been described by many as his variable
nature; former senator Effiong Dickson Bob who is said to be interested
in being a deputy governor, and is alleged to have been schemed out of the
2011 senate race by Akpabio and his then SSG, Umana Okon Umana with the
help of their foot soldiers like Bassey Albert and Luke, convened a
At the meeting were the chairman of the local government council, Akpan
and Akpabio's aides who hail from the area like Iniobong Ekong, Barr.
Essien Esema and Dr. Aniefiok Edem, a very senior Party chieftain in the
state, and a onetime commissioner of finance and former governorship
aspirant from Uyo senatorial district where it was decided that Akpabio
must be humiliated at all cost.
The first being to return Onofiok Luke back to the House of Assembly,
where he will emerge as the next speaker of the House; secondly, after the
primary election, Udom should be stopped from emerging as the Party's
standard bearer in Sunday's guber primary and ensure that Okpolupm Ette or
Nsima Ekere emerges as the Party's governorship candidate in Sunday's PDP
To achieve this, Bassey Albert was to provide the war chest needed to
execute the project, the senior special assistant to the governor on
security matters, Iniobong Ekong, was to recruit security agents to
provide cover for the hired thugs and cultists that will be recruited from
Akwa Ibom and neighbouring Cross River state. Indeed, the thugs had a
field day pouncing on delegates who were known to be none supporters of
Luke right under the watch of the security agents who did nothing.
When the delegates ran for their lives, supporters of Luke were said to
have taken over the entire process, casting multiple votes in his favour
and forced the returning officer to declare him winner.
According to a very reliable source, the delegate's list was replete with
several repeated names of delegates, this further gives credence to the
allusion that officers of the party also compromised the process to favour
To further embarrass the governor, the first lady's convoy which
passed through Idoro road later in the day was pelted with stones, sachet
water, bottles and every available missile by irate supporters of Luke.
The governor, who is said to have been livid with the report of the
primary election, is believed to be in a dilemma as to what to do. Though
the party appeal committee declared that there was no election in Nsit
Ubium state constituency and called for a rerun on Monday, it was later
put on hold on the alleged directive of Akpabio who is believed to have
been blackmailed by the former senator to declare Luke winner in return of
support for his guber aspirant.
Akpabio unwittingly is believed to have fallen for the trap set out for
him and is likely taste the bitter sauce he once served the former senator
The post House Of Assembly PDP Primaries: Akpabio Suffers Defeat, Esuene, Okon Umana, Effiong Bob, Others Rejoice appeared first on Pointblank News .