The political structure of a former governorship aspirant of the All Progressives’ Congress (APC) in Akwa Ibom State, Senator John Udoedehe, on Saturday formally endorsed the candidature of the party’s Gubernatorial Candidate, Obong Nsima Ekere.
The endorsement came through a motion moved by the APC Uyo Local Government Chapter Chairman, Mr. Emmanuel Andy, which was unanimously carried by members of the structure in their thousands during a rally organized by Udoedehe for Ekere at the latter’s campaign grounds in Uyo.
Andy, who was flanked by almost all the original APC Chapter Chairmen elected in 2014 including five that were re-elected in 2018, described the said former APC Chapter Chairmen that purportedly defected to the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) on Monday, last week, as impostors because the real former Chapter Chairmen were still with Udoedehe and Ekere.
The leader of the structure, Udoedehe, said they were fusing with Ekere’s structure into a united APC and that they were ready to do everything to ensure Ekere’s victory in the election.
“We affirm and confirm that we are going to work for Obong Nsima Ekere,” he stressed. “It is God that makes somebody something. God has decided to make him Governor. That is the truth. I am not jealous. I am going to work for him totally.”
He eulogized Ekere who, according to him, was his long-time friend as “a very amiable and very straightforward person.”
Udoedehe accused the representative of Akwa Ibom North-East Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Senator Bassey Albert Akpan, of luring his supporters with used car gifts and vowed to “teach him a lesson” by scuttling the Senator’s second term bid.
In his reaction, Ekere assured members of the structure of full integration in the incoming APC State Government and regular consultation with their leader, Udoedehe.
He praised the structure as a dedicated group of politicians that work based on conviction.
Ekere decried the present level of hunger in the state and pledged to turn round the situation as Governor by tackling headlong poverty and unemployment, its root causes.
“We will train and empower you to start businesses and become employers of labour,” he said.
The immediate past State Governor, Senator Godswill Akpabio, expressed optimism that Ekere would recreate the days of infrastructural revolution in the state, having been part of his administration.
Akpabio highlighted Ekere’s qualities which, he said, attracted his support.
His words: “The lot fell on one man. He is in NDDC working for Niger Delta. The glory of God is on him. The man’s name is ONE. ONE is Obong Nsima Ekere. We have a young man with a lot of love and a lot of forgiveness in his heart.”
The APC State Caucus Chairman, Atuekong Don Etiebet, described the event as a consolidation and consummation of the declaration of support for Ekere by Udoedehe a few weeks ago.
He pointed out that in supporting the APC standard bearer, Udoedehe had disappointed the PDP in the state which had expected him to cause problem in the APC.
The APC State Secretary and staunch loyalist of Udoedehe, Mr. Augustine Ekanem, stated that the thousands that turned out for the rally represented every polling unit in the state.
He said that they were focused on the task of electing Ekere as their project, having let go of the past.
The APC Senate Candidate for Akwa Ibom North-East Senatorial District, Elder Bassey Etim, predicted a landslide victory for the party in all the elections in 2019.