…Akwa Ibom People Speak
Barely five days to the 2023 gubernatorial election, Akwa Ibom people have pledged their unalloyed support and readiness to vote for the governorship candidate of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Pastor Umo Bassey Eno.
The position of Akwa Ibom people was revealed in a statewide opinion sampling carried out by The Pioneer team of reporters, constituted by its general manager and editor in chief, Umoette Umoette, recently.
It also reflected the PDP’s dominance in the state, as was seen in the outcome of the last Presidential and National Assembly election.
The people, spread across all the state constituencies, including the youths, elders, chiefs, women, men, religious and other opinion leaders as well as political stakeholders and non-indigenes resident in the state, making up 87 percent of the respondents, pledged to vote in Umo Eno as Gov Udom Emmanuel’s successor.
Their reasons to go with Umo Eno vary. While many say they see the candidacy of Umo Eno as a kingdom project, others see the surmounting of all legal distractions against him as evidence of the clean record he possesses.
These set of people are upbeat for Umo Eno for refusing to be distracted by anyone or anything opposed to his ambition, but rather, maintaining his calm disposition and focus during his campaign tour of the state, a trait the people of the state belief is one important quality the state needs in their governor, going forward.
Also, among the respondents are those who see Umo Eno as their preferred candidate for his tutelage under Governor Udom Emmanuel’s administration, who they adjudged to have performed excellently in the history of the State, observing that Umo Eno’s stint as a team member in the administration of Governor Emmanuel, as evidenced in his achievements in the different portfolios he handled, have prepared him for a seamless handling of the affairs of the state.
While the above three variant reasons appeared in the course of our opinion sampling, there was also the reasoning by many others that Akwa Ibom is PDP and cannot just imagine themselves voting for any other party in the forthcoming gubernatorial election.
According to them, PDP is well organised, stable and has always shown capacity in governance and in delivering dividends of democracy to the people.
For instance, speaking recently when Pastor Umo Eno consulted with the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), Chief Edet Amana said they were prepared and glad to support the PDP gubernatorial candidate as well as partner him for the development of the state.
They observed that the ARISE Agenda was a well-articulated document with over 75 percent engineering-driven content, adding that they were prepared to partner Eno to achieve his lofty goals.
Also speaking during a similar visit to the Nigerian Institute of Architects (NIA), Obong Victor Attah found Eno as beinghumble enough to know that he does not know everything and always willing to learn where necessary.
In his opinion, the coordinator of Umo Eno/Akon Eyakenyi Campaigns in Nsit Ubium, Otuekong Emmanuel Ibiok, recently posited that Nsit Ubium people had collectively taken a common position to solidly stand by their son and all other PDP candidates in this 2023 elections, noting that Pastor Umo Eno has the needed capacity, competence and strength of character to be trusted with the mandate of flying the party’s flag in this year’s gubernatorial race in the State.
In view of the fact that the peace we are enjoying in the State is very precious to our people, he added that they have alsoresolved to mobilise all available votes during the elections in favour of the PDP, the only umbrella of peace and development they trust to ensure the prevailing peace and development in our land continues.
Ibiok is confident that he, Umo Eno, will offer Akwa Ibom a people centric and visionary leadership, a leadership that will work at all times to better the lot and wellbeing of the people and scale up their standard of living, as well as remain steadfastly committed to the mandate and trust of the people by ensuring that their dream of a more prosperous, united and peaceful Akwa Ibom is not just attained, but secured for generations unborn.
That he will diligently and assiduously work to interpret to the latter, the content and spirit of the ARISE AGENDA to ensure the laudable goals encapsulated in the document are achieved for the overall benefit of Akwa Ibom people.
In Ukanafun Local Government Area, where cheerful and energetic supporters welcomed the governorship candidate for his campaign, displaying placards with different inscriptions such as, “Pastor Umo Eno remains our candidate,” “Say no to a convict, a fraudster,” “Umo Eno has capacity, competence, character and compassion.” “We need a pastor governor, not a cultist,” and “Ukanafun is for Umo Eno, PDP,” the people declared that Eno remains the authentic candidate of the PDP and will be elected as governor of the state come March 11.
The state chairman of the PDP, Elder Aniekan Akpan, declared that Eno remains the authentic candidate of the PDP and will be elected as governor of the state come March 11.
He added that Ukanafun is a PDP stronghold and the people will vote massively for Eno and all other candidates of the party.
A beneficiary of Eno’s mentorship and empowerment programmes, Pastor Ubong Jonah, noted that the seasoned businessman was a trusted and detribalised leader with proven years of integrity and can-do spirit.
He disclosed that after completing his national youth servicecorps scheme, he worked with and had been enjoying his daily bread from Eno, adding that the mentorship, exposure and experience garnered under Eno, years ago, has enabled him to stand out and record progress in his line of business.
Jonah urged Ukanafun people and the state at large to vote Umo Eno for a better Akwa Ibom.
The political leader of Esit Eket, Elder Ben Udobia, maintained that as a successful entrepreneur, Umo Eno will use his wealth of experience to develop the economy of the state in line with ARISE AGENDA.
Udobia, who described Umo Eno as a peaceful and humble person, was hopeful that when he emerges as governor of Akwa Ibom, he will work to sustain the existing peace in the state as well as carry every Akwa Ibom person along in the interest of the state.
The chairman, Uyo Senatorial District Traders Association, Elder Godwin Ebong, during a solidarity march round the Etaha Itam Market as part of activities by traders in the market to mobilise support for Umo Eno, recently, expressed confidence that the PDP governorship candidate will continue to empower traders in the market and state at large with interest-free loans to expand their businesses.
Ebong, who is the chairman, Board of Trustees, Etaha Itam market, expressed optimism that Umo Eno is the only person that will continue with the harmonious relationship and goodwill already established by Governor Emmanuel.