As the Akwa Ibom State Independent Electoral Commission (AKISIEC) releases the time table for the 2020 local government elections in the state, the political gladiators and the traditional leaders have endorsed the second term aspiration of the Incumbent Chairman of Essien Udim; Elder Raphael Isobara.
Speaking during a consultation visit on him, Akparawa (Chief) Michael Afangideh (OON), noted that it was imperative to support Elder Isobara to complete his second term as Chairman of the area. Chief Afangideh maintained that Essien Udim has for the past two decades enjoyed peaceful coexistence among the different blocs in the area, adding that such was possible due to the zoning arrangement for political offices and respect for same.
He noted that Essien Udim people are thoroughbred citizens who understand the importance of peace and unity among people of a particular area; stressing that Essien Udim will continue to pursue and maintain peaceful coexistence in the area.Chief Afangideh noted that one of the major causes of conflict and crisis in any society is injustice and unfair treatment. Adding that in the forthcoming local government election, Essien Udim will ensure that justice, fairness and equity are not compromised.
While expressing his determination to support the re-election of Elder Raphael Isobara, Chief Afangideh who is an Officer, Order of the Niger (OON), urged any other citizen of Essien Udim who might have nursed interest for the 2020 chairmanship election to queue behind Isobara to consolidate on the existing peace and harmony in the area.
Similarly, Abom Emmanuel Umanah, a former Commissioner for Commerce and Industry in the old cross River State, has thrown his weight behind the second term bid of Elder Raphael Isobara. He attributed his action to the time tested zoning tradition in the area, noting that it had guaranteed peace and inclusiveness for over three decades. According to Hon Umanah, the support for Elder Isobara has become imperative to ensure that the peace and unity in the area is maintained, adding that a precedent had earlier been set, with the completion of two unbroken terms by Rt Hon Elder Nse Effiong Ntuen, from Ukana East clan.
He recalled with joy, the incidence which surrounded the 2019 governorship election in the state, maintaining that Elder Isobara stood firm and supportive to the party and all its candidates hence, should be supported to continue with his good works.
On his part, the Paramount Ruler of Essien Udim, His royal Majesty, Obong Cosmos Akpan had earlier endorsed the second term bid of Elder Isobara and called on the entire Essien Udim people to support him. The monarch said the ultimate achievement of any leader is the pursuit of peace, adding that Elder Raphael Isobara has maintained the peace in Essien Udim and deserves support to consolidate on this achievement.
While urging everyone to support Elder Isobara, Obong Cosmos Akpan advised all to prioritize the greater good of Essien Udim people above pecuniary and selfish benefits.
It is worthy of note that there are two development areas in Essien Udim Local Government Area – Essien Annang and Udim development areas – and the precedent of electing a representative for two terms in office has been established with the consolidation of Elder (Hon) Emmanuel Sunday Akpan (Essien Annang), as a two term member of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, and Rt. Hon. Nse Effiong Ntuen (Udim) as a two term Chairman of the Council area; and the existing zoning arrangement favours; Ekpenyong Atai, in this dispensation.