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Re: “Focus on NASS, not Akwa Ibom, Group tells Akpabio”: Balderdash from Attention Seekers

Re: “Focus on NASS, not Akwa Ibom, Group tells Akpabio”: Balderdash from Attention Seekers

October 2, 2023


Re: “Focus on NASS, not Akwa Ibom, Group tells Akpabio”: Balderdash from Attention Seekers

The attention of Niger Delta Youth Stakeholders Forum (NDYSF) has been drawn to a contrived, awkward and disingenuous concocted story published on Tribune Online page ( with the caption “Focus on NASS, not Akwa Ibom, Group tells Akpabio” and credited to one self-seeking group, Alliance for Peace in Niger Delta (APND) and dated September 27, 2023.

Ordinarily, the patently malicious, spurious and preposterous story on Tribune Online would not deserve any response, but for the need for us to put the records straight in the interest of innocent, unsuspecting members of the public.

From the statements credited to them in the story, It is obvious that the group, rather than seek to understand the facts of the issue in question, have relied on an ill conceived and twisted tale dished out to them by those doing the bidding of their paymasters for obvious reasons.

It Is public knowledge that the amended Traditional Rulers law recently passed by the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly and assented to by the Governor, Pastor Umo Eno, has generated serious uproar in the State. It was in the light of the above that Sen. Godswill Akpabio during his remarks at the Akwa Ibom State 36th Anniversary Special Interdenominational Thanksgiving Service appealed to the State Governor to consider taking another look at the law to address the contending issue in the interest of peace, unity and progress of the State.

There is no gainsaying that Sen. Godswill Akpabio was indeed speaking from a point of strength, having been met and briefed by some Traditional Rulers from the aggrieved sections of the State. So referring to Sen. Akpabio’s well received remarks at the Thanksgiving service as “revolt and outburst” is very uncomplimentary and unbecoming of a group touted as peace advocate.

For the avoidance of doubts, it is pertinent to point out that the rotation of Chairmanship in Council of Traditional Rulers in Akwa Ibom, with a yearly tenure that was later reviewed upward to two years, which the group erroneously claims Sen. Akpabio was referring to in his remarks, has been and it is still In practice for over a decade in Akwa Ibom State.

The public should understand that Sen. Akpabio was referring to the Headship or office of the President General of the Supreme Council of Akwa Ibom Traditional Rulers as captured in the amended law – of which the tenure Is life – only elapsing at the demise of the occupant.

It was on the strength of the above and upon being informed of the disturbing clause that the said new office, President General, in the law will be the exclusive preserve of one ethnic group in the State that Sen. Akpabio suggested a rotation of the office amongst the ethnic groups upon the demise of the occupant as what he believes would be a fair, equitable, inclusive and non-discriminatory option for consideration in the interest of peace in the State.

Since the Senate President suggestion does and cannot translate to meddling with Pastor Umo Eno in administering the affairs of the State as shamelessly alleged by this disgruntled group, we therefore view this malicious onslaught on Sen. Akpabio as a despicable antic of twisted minds, infamously seeking attention by throwing unwarranted darts at a man of with unimpeachable reputation whose uncommon leadership style resonates with the people.

We wish to remind these faceless detractors that Godswill Akpabio is first of all a Senator representing Akwa Ibom North West(Ikot Ekpene) Senatorial District, before his office of the Senate Presidency. Being a respectable leader in the State, a former Governor, and a representative of the people of his Senatorial District confer on him not just the right to contribute to critical issues affecting the State and the people, but one whose opinion should be sought. So it is insulting, not just to Sen. Akpabio but also to the people he represents for a rag-tag group to suggest that he should have no say in the affairs of Akwa Ibom State. What impudence!

Sen. Godswill Akpabio is one leader who has not hidden his love for Akwa Ibom State and the people. It is completely false, unfounded and misleading to claim that such a man, who has been known for his unfeigned desire to always put Akwa Ibom first in all his dealings would turn around to incite ethnic violence as alleged by the group. Though a proud Annang son, the President of the 10th Senate is a detribalized leader who believes firmly in the unity and progress of the State. Therefore trying to pit him against the people and associating him with the intent of disrupting the peace and triggering widespread ethnic violence in the State as alleged by this phoney group are all conjecturings that are not consistent with his character.

Sadly, the refusal of the said group to mention that the issue raised in the amended law had already sparked protests and suspicion amongst traditional rulers, youths and women of some ethnic groups who feel slighted even before Akpabio made that sensitive remark, which has to a large extent calmed frayed nerves, smacks of ignorance and deliberate mischief on the part of the purveyors.

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We have cause to believe this , as their choice of words have proven , that this group and their sponsors belong to the league of evil geniuses who are wont on instigating crisis as their antics cannot thrive in an atmosphere of peace and unity.

It Is only ludicrous and laughable to see this unserious minded group speculate on a nonexistent impeachment threats against Sen. Godswill Akpabio as the Senate President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. This is a man who recently was inundated by messages of goodwill from his colleagues, associates and other eminent personalities from within and outside Nigeria for superintending over a progressive, rancour free and united National Assembly when marking his 100 days in office as Senate President.

In the Ministry of Niger Delta, which Akpabio supervised the Forensic audit, on the orders of former President Buhari and as requested by the Niger Delta leaders, many dubious deals were uncovered while contractors returned to site of projects they had long abandoned.

At the Niger Delta Ministry as Minister, Sen. Akpabio broke the over 20years jinx when he completed and relocated the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) to its 13-storey building permanent and befitting Secretariat. He also completed the 1005 bed space hostel in the University of Uyo, and oversaw many other life touching projects. These are verifiable imprints and the said group has mischievously blinded itself to these feats.

While using this medium to warn those whose stock in trade is instigating crisis to desists forthwith in order not to jeopardize the development of the State through concomitant distortion of the mutual trust and bond of brotherhood we all share, we call on the security agencies to pay particular attention to Nsikak Francis and all members of APND and possibly invite them for questioning as we have cause to believe that they have a sinister motive to cause chaos in the State with the duplicitous intent of blaming it on Sen. Akpabio.

Lastly, it suffices to say that the said group, needs elementary training in peace and conflict resolution as it is many light miles away from exhibiting the tendencies and disposition expected of pro-peace organisations which they claim to be.

Mr. Cyril Essien
National President
Niger Delta Youth Stakeholders Forum (NDYSF)

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