In the build-up to the forthcoming local government elections in Akwa Ibom, Governor Udom Emmanuel has warned executive members of the inaugurated Peoples Democratic Party at the ward and state levels to refrain from taking a traditional oath (mbiam) to avoid adverse consequences.
Emmanuel handed down the warning Monday at the swearing-in ceremony of the newly elected State Executive members of the PDP, at the Banquet Hall, Government House, Uyo warned that if the government is aware of such, the candidates will forfeit their nominations.
The Governor who congratulated the newly sworn-in PDP State Chairman, Hon. Udo Ekpenyong and his Executive members tasked them on the need for transparency, commitment, and faithfulness to the party and the people in line with the trust bestowed in them.
He said it is difficult for a man to produce a successor because God could appoint his successor, attributing the emergence of Udo Ekpenyong to God’s design and expressed optimism that he would excel in the new office has performed creditably at the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs where he served before his elevation.
“I want to believe by your calling today you will care for the welfare of all Akwa Ibom people under the PDP umbrella. Today, I’m making it public that out of everything you’ve been telling me about each chieftaincy stool, clan headship, and so on, 99.9 per cent of them are correct,” he remarked.
The PDP Chairman, Ekpenyong expressed appreciation to the leader of the party, his predecessors, and party faithful for finding him worthy for the position and assured of a new era for PDP in the state.
He pledged to continue providing qualitative leadership and strengthening the synergy between the party and its elected leaders as well as sustaining the social contract with the people.
Ekpenyong stated “Our party has become the formidable electoral machine that it is today, because of the immense and immeasurable contributions, efforts and investment of time, talent and resources by all members.
“Under my watch, this State Executive Committee (SEC) shall build on that by harnessing our human resources and opportunities to reinforce PDP dominance. The herculean task of strengthening our party is a challenge that we are ready for.”
According to him, “My Exco and I shall take our party to the units, using the Unit Commanders framework established by His Excellency, Gov. Udom Emmanuel, and every unit shall be designated with the name of an active party member charged with the responsibility of delivering the unit at all times.
“We shall create a level playing field for all members of our party; we shall reach out and consult widely to build consensus even as we actively engage in grassroots sensitisation and social mobilisation.
“We shall never take our people and base for granted; we shall allow transparency and justice during congresses, primaries, and elections; we shall work with His Excellency to ensure a smooth transition.
“While we shall continue to keep the umbrella open to all, we also reassure other political parties in the state (through Inter-Party Advisory Council, IPAC) that they have a partner in the Peoples Democratic Party as long as the focus is Akwa Ibom interest.
“We shall encourage our members who hold office to create platforms for public engagement to deepen the bonds between our party and the people. We shall reassert the supremacy of the party and emphasise the need for party loyalty and discipline.
“We shall continue to ensure regular interface with members with a view to making the party viable and self-sustaining. We, therefore, solicit your support and cooperation so that, together, we can reach greater heights beyond what our imaginations currently conceive,” he added.
The outgone Chairman, Obong Paul Ekpo, who attributed the success of his tenure to the cooperation of the party faithful, thanked Governor Emmanuel for being a pillar of support throughout his eight-year tenure, praying for the success of the new administration.