Akwa-Ibom 2019: PDP allegation of intimidation unfounded ― Nsima Ekere, APC candidate
ALL Progressives Congress governorship candidate in Akwa Ibom State, Nsima Ekere has dismissed the claim of an orchestrated plot of state of emergency in Akwa-Ibom state ahead of next February elections in the State. The State House of Assembly has been embroiled in a crisis of recent following two aborted attempts to remove the Speaker, Onofioke Luke and ultimately push for the impeachment of the governor, Udom Emmanuel.
The national secretariat of the main opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party,( PDP) has since pointed fingers of scorn at the APC and the Presidency over the political turmoil in the south-south state.
But speaking with newsmen in Abuja, Mr Ekere disclaimed the allegation as misplaced and further declared that the PDP led government in the state has been intimidating members of the APC.
He further argued that under the President Muhammadu Buhari led administration, no one could substantiate the claim of use of State apparatus to silence opposition parties.
He said:” For any Nigerian who knows President Muhammadu Buhari will know that he is not the kind of person that will use the apparatus of government against any individual or in favour of a particular political party. As a matter of fact, you are aware that some members of the APC are already complaining that we are in government, but not in power which is reference to the fact that ordinarily, the way the ruling party in the past used to employ the apparatus of government to intimidate opposition parties is not happening now.
“So, I wonder why anybody would wake up and say that is happening in Akwa Ibom state. That is totally false and no truth in such an assertion. It is a matter of crying wolf. In fact, if there is someone who is intolerant to the opposition, anybody desirous of not allowing the citizens to find their political bearing, it is the intolerant government in Akwa Ibom state.
This is a government that does not even allow opposition candidates in the APC to erect billboards in the state.
A few weeks ago, when I rolled out my outdoor campaigns all over the state, the following day, the government sent thugs and miscreants to pull down the billboards and that of the President.
These are the same people that will be complaining that the government wants to use the apparatus of office against them. There is absolutely no truth in this claim.”
The APC candidate expressed confidence that his main rival and PDP candidate, Governor Emmanuel would lose the election, as he noted that almost all the political heavyweight in the state have defected to the APC.
“PDP can’t come back. Like I said earlier, we were all PDP members. The governor then, Godswill Akpabio was PDP, the deputy governor and Secretary to State Government, (SSG) were all PDP and all of them are in the APC today. All the political actors then who made the PDP have all left and 90 per cent are now in the APC. These were the people that usually make things happen. So do I need to tell you that there is no way PDP can win in Akwa Ibom? They don’t even have the men and resources.
The only thing they have is the money that the governor is throwing around. That is why you are having defection on a daily basis in the state to join the APC, even government officials are resigning from the government and the party to join us in APC. Do I still need to tell you that we will win? ”