Ahead of the 2023 senate race, the Speaker of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Aniekan Bassey has reacted to reports that he was rejected at Ibiono Ibom LGA Area.
Reports surfaced on social media that the Speaker was rejected by some PDP delegates for wearing Pastor Umo Eno’s campaign faze cap when he went for consultation in Ibiono Ibom LGA on Wednesday.
Speaking with TheMail Newspaper, Rt. Hon. Aniekan Bassey said everybody has the freedom of association, stating that he cannot be stampeded because of his decision to throw his weight behind the governorship aspiration of Pastor Umo Eno.
Commissioner for Lands and Water Resources, Pastor Umo Eno is the preferred aspirant of Governor Udom Emmanuel. TheMail Newspaper understands that bulk of the PDP delegates from Ibiono Ibom LGA are loyalists of Senator Bassey Albert and proponents of the Itu/Ibiono Ibom governorship course, hence are not favourably disposed to supporting Pastor Eno.
“I went to consult some of the delegates from Ibiono Ibom LGA for my senate aspiration. They asked I should remove Umo Eno’s campaign faze cap. I told them that if their support for me would be based on such condition, then I would rather lose the votes of Ibiono Ibom at the party primary.
“They pleaded that I should remove the cap before going ahead with the consultation, I told them I would rather leave than do that.
“They are fond of doing this. Governorship is not anybody’s birthright. In 2014 when the governor (then an aspirant) went to Ibiono Ibom, they were violent.
“OBA whom they are supporting came to consult me in my house, wore his faze cap and I didn’t ask him to remove his cap.
“Some of my staff are core supporters of the governorship aspiration of Senator Bassey Albert. I have never for once stopped them from supporting their aspirant. I have never for once contemplated stopping their salary or even sacking them. Politics is not do or die, it should be played with decorum”, the Speaker told TheMail Newspaper.