By Isaac Job, Uyo
A group under the aegis of Itu/Ibiono Ibom Federal Constituency Youth Forum has said that the governorship slot in the state for 2023 must be zoned to the area for equity and justice.
The youth insisted that Governor Udom Emmanuel must respect zoning arrangement by the People Democratic Party ( PDP) in respect for Uyo Senatorial District and allow the people of Itu/Ibiono Ibom Federal Constituency to take their turn after other federal constituencies in the Senatorial District have been privileged to produce the governor in state .
Addressing a press conference in uyo on Tuesday , the spokesman for the youth Barrister Bassey Etim Bassey threatened to dump the People Democratic Party(PDP) for another who will hearken to their prayers of giving them their platform to produce the next governor in 2023.
Bassey therefore warned the state governor Udom Emmanuel to desist from spending state funds to finance his preferred aspirant Pastor Umo Eno as such financial recklessness can deplete economy of the state .
He recalled that Itu/Ibiono Ibom Federal Constituency were denied opportunity to produce governor in the in 1999 and 2014 when their illustrious sons aspired to become governor of the state but were prevailed to rescind their aspiration in the hope that at the appropriate time the area will be considered.
“In 1999 two prominent sons of Itu/Ibiono Ibom federal constituency; Obong Nsima Umoh (Abai Ibiono) and Late Obong Ebong Okon (OFR) stepped out to contest the gubernatorial election, but through the understanding midwifed by Stakeholders like Senator Anietie Okon, Chief Itak Bob Ekarika, Chief Otu Robert Akpan, Senator Ibok Essien , Otuekong Don Etiebet and Late Senator Etang Umoeyo etc., engendered the emergence of Obong Victor Attah as a consensus candidate of the party, on that accord Itu/Ibiono federal constituency were shown reasons to wait for the next turn, which is now.”
“In 2014, when one of our sons from the federal constituency, Obong Bassey Albert indicated interest for the position, stakeholders in the state, including, the then governor, His Excellency Obong Godswill Obot Akpabio, all impressed on the federal constituency to allow Eket senatorial district to take a shot. It was further agreed at the town hall meeting organized by the Party stakeholders at the Kenedy Ekong Hall, Itu Local Government Council, that when the governorship returns to Uyo senatorial district, that it shall be the turn of Itu/Ibiono Ibom federal constituency in the spirit of justice, equity and fair play.”
He said the people were not comfortable with the undemocratic disposition of governor Udom Emmanuel which he said was capable of truncating democratic institutions in the state.
He appealed to governor Emmanuel to respect peace age-long peace accord and be democratic in his approach to support his preferred candidate among other demands .
“The Governor can support whosoever he chooses but not to overtly or covertly coerce appointees or political office holders with threats of sanction or falling out of his favour for failing to support his preferred aspirant or candidates, and or expressing their supports for other aspirants. Otherwise, imposition of any guise will certainly bring the existence of our party in Akwa Ibom State to an end, while promoting other political parties. ” he said.