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PDP ridicules Akpabio over perceived evasion of defeat in rerun election



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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Akwa Ibom State at the weekend ridiculed former Governor Godswill Akpabio, Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, chiding him for tactically evading confirmatory defeat in the senatorial rerun election in Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District. PDP challenged Akpabio to submit himself for confirmatory defeat in the rerun election. The PDP condemned the withdrawal of the former governor from the Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District rerun election, describing the Minister’s action as “locus classicus for political cowardice”.

PDP State Publicity Secretary in Akwa Ibom, Comrade Ini Ememobong, in a media interaction at the Party Secretariat, Uyo, was of the view that the “withdrawal of the Senatorial candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) is a clear face-saving attempt by Chief Akpabio, in a bid to avoid a recurring defeat by Senator Chris Ekpenyong, whom he had earlier boasted was not a match for him.”

Comrade Ememobong mocked Akpabio for his reason that he withdrew because of the ministerial appointment offered him by President Muhammadu Buhari. The State Publicity Secretary questioned why Akpabio did not withdraw the petition before the Court of Appeal judgment which ordered partial rerun which Ekpeyong of he Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has clear lead.  “Why did he not withdraw before the Appeal Court judgment? If the Court of Appeal had granted the reliefs he sought for, would he have still withdrawn,” he declared.

Ememobong added that Akpabio plotted to derail the electoral process in Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District.

“We have on good authority that he intends to use the judicial process to prevent the conduct of the rerun, by instituting court actions to compel INEC to accept his purported withdrawal- this suit he intends to drag up to the Supreme Court if he loses.”

He challenged Akpabio that rather than withdraw, he should be excited to recontest in order to prove his mettle, especially, given that the rerun is to be conducted in his native Essien Udim Local Government Area.
“Senator Akpabio, who once boasted that he couldn’t lose an election should have been excited, as he was earlier, to show the world that he cannot lose an election in his local government area; why is he afraid of going for an election in his native Essien Udim,” Ememobong declared.

Comrade Ememobong demanded the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to treat Akpabio’s withdrawal letter as a concession of defeat, and hold that APC has no candidate in the forthcoming Senatorial rerun due next year.

The State Publicity Secretary also urged INEC to ignore pressures for removal of the Resident Electoral Commissioner in Akwa Ibom State, Mike Igini.

“Additionally, we ask the commission to ignore and discountenance the shameless demand for the removal of Mike Igini as REC. This call is ill-motivated as he wants REC that will allow him the liberty to concoct results in Essien Udim during the rerun, as that is the only way he can win elections there.”