Town hall mayhem: One dead as Udom’s rants set Ikot Abasi on fire.

21 Mar

 

-Akpabio’s equity lacks human face- Nsima Ekere

The ongoing town hall meeting floated by Governor Godswill Akpabio is fast degenerating into disarray going by the spate of resentment, confusion, fury and violence trailing the confab.

Akpabio and his Ikot Abasi victim

Akpabio and his Ikot Abasi victim

The governor, who has attached so much importance to the meeting, is fast losing grip of its outcome as stakeholders make a meal of the initiative which many have seen dismissed as a ploy to foist a successor on Akwa Ibom people.
The level of opposition and condemnation greeting both the meeting and Akpabio’s succession plan has sent the governor jittery as the meeting becomes messier and messier by the day.
The last two outings-Ibiono Ibom/ Itu and Ikot Abasi Federal Constituencies were more chaotic and violent.
Just last Tuesday, the trip to Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency turned violent and bloody as at least one person was reportedly killed and several others sustained various degree of injuries following the ensuing rampage by Ikot Abasi youths who vandalized vehicles in and around the premises, attacking the governor’s convoy in the process.
The violence, it was learnt, was sequel to a comment by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Emmanuel Udom, who in his vote of thanks, said that, being in the corridor of power, he has every government document at his disposal and could manipulate same in his favour in 2015. He was said to have insinuated that with this singular edge, he was the candidate to beat in the 2015 election. He reportedly argued that three deputy governors from Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency is as good as one governor.
Udom’s was said to have reacted to a remark by the immediate-past Deputy Governor of the State, Obong Nsima Ekere who argued that if Governor Akpabio is truly an epitome of justice, fairness and equity, the 2015 governorship slot should be given to either Oron Federal Constituency or Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency, and not Eket Federal Constituency which Udom hails from..
“If you’re truly an advocate of justice, fairness and equity as propagated through this Town Hall meeting, in 2015, give power to either Oron or Ikot Abasi Federal
Constituency who have not tested power before, if not let the people decide,”
Obong Nsima Ekere was quoted as warning Akpabio.
Udom’s statement had angered the already irked youths who immediately went on rampage against the governor and his envoy, allegedly attacking the governor’s convoy. The situation worsened when members of the Crowd Control Unit (CCU) attempted to stop the angry youths. Report says they were overcome by hundreds of of Ikot Abasi youths who chased and beat them mercilessly, after exchange of fire.
The youths were angry that Udom Emmanuel was not only undermining their collective role in the 2015 governorship election, but had also gone too far to insult their sensibilities and intelligence.

It would be recalled that only on the first day of the briefing in Eket, elders of Eket Senatorial District had warned Akpabio not to go ahead with his plans of singling out a candidate from the senatorial district for the people of Eket as they are capable of selecting their own candidate in an open and level playing field. Former Minister, Essien Nduese had particularly called on all aspirants from Eket to contest in the election and not think that Akpabio was going to select anyone at the detriment of other qualified candidates from the area.
Violence had also erupted on Thursday, during the town hall meeting at Itu/Ibiono Ibom Federal Constituency, as angry youths from Ibiono Ibom protested the zoning arrangement they said does not take the area into consideration.
Both the Paramount Ruler of Ibiono Ibom Local Government Area and that of Itu berated Governor Akpabio for playing politics with the Ibibios and the traditional institution, describing the Town Hall meetings as nothing but a political jamboree stage-managed by the governor for his own benefit.

“If it was in the North, an Emir would never be invited to come and sit here and participate in this type of discussion. The proper thing you could have done would have been to consult us, the royal fathers. We would have told you what is going on in our various communities and then give you recommendations on the proper direction to go. We are all Ibibio. We, the royal fathers, are not the ones propagating ethnic divisions,” one of the royal fathers was quoted as saying.
They bemoaned the deplorable road conditions in their domains, blaming Akpabio for not keeping the promise he made to the people of his area.
One of Ikot Abasi youths slain during the rampage.
The ongoing town hall meeting floated by Governor Godswill Akpabio is fast degenerating into disarray going by the spate of resentment, confusion, fury and violence trailing the confab.
The governor, who has attached so much importance to the meeting, is fast losing grip of its outcome as stakeholders make a meal of the initiative which many have seen dismissed as a ploy to foist a successor on Akwa Ibom people.
The level of opposition and condemnation greeting both the meeting and Akpabio’s succession plan has sent the governor jittery as the meeting becomes messier and messier by the day.
The last two outings-Ibiono Ibom/ Itu and Ikot Abasi Federal Constituencies were more chaotic and violent.
Just last Tuesday, the trip to Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency turned violent and bloody as at least one person was reportedly killed and several others sustained various degree of injuries following the ensuing rampage by Ikot Abasi youths who vandalized vehicles in and around the premises, attacking the governor’s convoy in the process.
The violence, it was learnt, was sequel to a comment by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Emmanuel Udom, who in his vote of thanks, said that, being in the corridor of power, he has every government document at his disposal and could manipulate same in his favour in 2015. He was said to have insinuated that with this singular edge, he was the candidate to beat in the 2015 election. He reportedly argued that three deputy governors from Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency is as good as one governor.
Udom’s was said to have reacted to a remark by the immediate-past Deputy Governor of the State, Obong Nsima Ekere who argued that if Governor Akpabio is truly an epitome of justice, fairness and equity, the 2015 governorship slot should be given to either Oron Federal Constituency or Ikot Abasi Federal Constituency, and not Eket Federal Constituency which Udom hails from..
“If you’re truly an advocate of justice, fairness and equity as propagated through this Town Hall meeting, in 2015, give power to either Oron or Ikot Abasi Federal
Constituency who have not tested power before, if not let the people decide,”
Obong Nsima Ekere was quoted as warning Akpabio.
Udom’s statement had angered the already irked youths who immediately went on rampage against the governor and his envoy, allegedly attacking the governor’s convoy. The situation worsened when members of the Crowd Control Unit (CCU) attempted to stop the angry youths. Report says they were overcome by hundreds of of Ikot Abasi youths who chased and beat them mercilessly, after exchange of fire.
The youths were angry that Udom Emmanuel was not only undermining their collective role in the 2015 governorship election, but had also gone too far to insult their sensibilities and intelligence.

It would be recalled that only on the first day of the briefing in Eket, elders of Eket Senatorial District had warned Akpabio not to go ahead with his plans of singling out a candidate from the senatorial district for the people of Eket as they are capable of selecting their own candidate in an open and level playing field. Former Minister, Essien Nduese had particularly called on all aspirants from Eket to contest in the election and not think that Akpabio was going to select anyone at the detriment of other qualified candidates from the area.
Violence had also erupted on Thursday, during the town hall meeting at Itu/Ibiono Ibom Federal Constituency, as angry youths from Ibiono Ibom protested the zoning arrangement they said does not take the area into consideration.
Both the Paramount Ruler of Ibiono Ibom Local Government Area and that of Itu berated Governor Akpabio for playing politics with the Ibibios and the traditional institution, describing the Town Hall meetings as nothing but a political jamboree stage-managed by the governor for his own benefit.

“If it was in the North, an Emir would never be invited to come and sit here and participate in this type of discussion. The proper thing you could have done would have been to consult us, the royal fathers. We would have told you what is going on in our various communities and then give you recommendations on the proper direction to go. We are all Ibibio. We, the royal fathers, are not the ones propagating ethnic divisions,” one of the royal fathers was quoted as saying.
They bemoaned the deplorable road conditions in their domains, blaming Akpabio for not keeping the promise he made to the people of his area.

Courtesy: National Newstrack

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