A pro-Akpabio group under the auspices of Akwa Ibom Democratic Forum, a group within the All Progressives Congress on Thursday, tackled former minister of Petroleum, Chief Don Etiebet over his comment on the Akwa Ibom North-West (Ikot Ekpene), senatorial district seat and asked the party to hold Etiebet responsible, if Senator Godswill Akpabio loses the senatorial election next year.
Etiebet, a chieftain and member board of trustees of the APC, had threatened to ensure that Akpabio loses the election into the Senate in 2023, if he does not step down for a former deputy inspector general of police, Udom Ekpoudom.
The elder statesman argued that it was the turn of Abak Federal Constituency not Ikot Ekpene Federal Constituency, where Akpabio hails from, to occupy the Red Chambers for the district.
The group however, in a statement by it’s director of Media and Publicity, Mr Joe Iniodu, made available to our correspondent in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State said Etiebet was instigating a revolt against the APC and Akpabio’s senatorial aspiration.
The statement titled ‘Etiebet’s Gloomy Prognosis’, read in part, “I read with deep concern Atuekong Don Etiebet’s extrapolation on the matter surrounding the APC ticket of Akwa Ibom North-West Senatorial District, in which our revered Elder Statesman raised propositions that seem to be confusing and offensive to the grundnorm of law and logic in the first instance and against the interest of the party which he is a member of the Board of Trustees.
“Much as these views are his entitlements and within the limits of his rights, they have the likelihood to rankle and arouse public sensibilities in manners that are not consistent with our age-long values.
“The former petroleum minister holds the view that a disgraceful and shattering defeat awaits Akpabio in the 2023 Senate election.
“His proposed option which categorically states that the whole Abak 5 has resolved to back a candidate from Abak/Etim-Ekpo/Ika Federal Constituency from any party to win if APC must field a non Abak 5 candidate leaves much to be desired being a respected party man.
“Our dear father and elder statesman has harped on the need for peace and justice. Every society with respected father figures like him is considered to be in advantage especially when it comes to the quest for these desirable values; peace and justice.”
Responding, Etiebet said the country is now in campaign mode, hence he has decided to stand on the path of truth, justice, and equity.
“Politics is not only power play but consensus and sacrificing actions to achieve desired goals in peace and harmony. In 2007 when we fought a very keenly contested election for Godswill Akpabio to succeed Obong Victor Attah as Governor, we Annang leaders had to force Abak-5 senatorial aspirants, because it was their turn, to step down for Senator Aloysius Etok from Ini/Ikono Federal Constituency, so that Ini/Ikono could produce a senator which was impossible ordinarily in order for them to vote for an Annang man, Godswill Akpabio, to succeed Victor Attah as Governor as he didn’t support him
“That was a sacrifice for Godswill Akpabio. Abak/Etim Ekpo/Ika Federal Constituency has sacrificed their turn three times since 1999- in 2007 to Senator Aloysius Etok, in 2015 again to Senator Godswill Akpabio and in 2019 to Senator Christopher Ekpenyong. It is only expedient and good naturalness that we should allow them to go this time. That’s the stand of Abak-5,” he declared.