N’Delta Group Cautions Akpabio On Interference In NDDC
A pan- Niger Delta group, Movement for the Survival of the Izon Ethnic Nationality in the Niger Delta (MOSIEND), has cautioned the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator, Godswill Akpabio, over his recent activities in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), which they say is capable of setting the region on fire.
The group alleged that “Akpabio’s divide and rule approach is provocative, and a drawback that can set the region ablaze”.
In a statement, signed and issued to newsmen by the National President, Kennedy Tonjo West, the group also blamed the South-South governors for getting the region to an abysmal state, by subtly encouraging the Minister’s unethical and illegal permutation to achieve his personal goals.
“As a group, we wonder why it took the Governors of the South-South states so long to see Akpabio’s actions to manipulate, cajole and arm-twist institutions to do his ulterior bidding as an aberration.
“The Governors kept mute when the Minister thwarted the Board confirmation process by National Assembly. Also recall that President Buhari transmitted via correspondence a list of Board members to the National Assembly for screening and subsequent confirmation, which was the proper and genuine thing to do, as it runs in tandem with the NDDC Act, and inaugurated the Interim Management Committee through the back door to oversee the almighty, out of the world and uncommon Forensic Audit.
“The Governors, just like some of the Senators, apart from the Deputy Senate President, sheepishly did his bidding. About 17 months down the line, what has the forensic audit amounted to, as it concerns the developmental needs of the region.
“The Minister just need to come out upright and be sincere with his people, he should accept his mistake and listen to stakeholders for cohesive development.
“Recent plans to elongate the service of the Barr Effiong Okon Akwa as sole Administrator of the Commission did not come as a surprise to MOSIEND, just as it did not go down well with the greater population in the region. This is because Akpabio got it all laid out from the outset.
“All plans are basically to enrich himself, and impoverish the good people of the region for not voting him in 2019, hence see the office as his compensation for losing the election as such, Akpabio to milk the region dry.
“Recall that the Hon Minister had assured Niger Deltans that no contract will be awarded and no contractors will be paid pending the conclusion of the Forensic Audit. One year, five months, for a six months audit, what did we get, issues of misappropriation, kleptomania, fleecing of the commission’s treasury, gross underdevelopment in the region.
“The Federal Government had approved and released about 799 billion Naira or more, for the 2019 and 2020 Budget, what are the tangible projects Minister Akpabio can lay hand on as his initiatives under the period in view,” the statement said.
‘Zoning, Hard-Work Responsible For APC’s C/River Victory’
National Women’s Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Dr Betta Edu, has congratulated Sen. Bassey Otu and Mr Peter Odey, who were elected Governor and Deputy Governor, respectively in Cross River State.
Edu, who spoke in a telephone interview with The Tide’s source on Monday in Calabar, said the governorship zoning system practiced in the state and hard work were largely responsible for APC’s victory.
Edu, who was reacting to the announcement of Sen. Otu of APC as Governor-elect, told the source that the governorship position in the state is been zoned across the three senatorial districts since 1999.
According to her, the Southern Senatorial District produced Mr Donald Duke, who was Governor from 1999 to 2007, while the Central Senatorial District produced Sen. Liyel Imoke, who was Governor from 2007 to 2015.
She also explained that the North also produced the incumbent Governor, Ben Ayade, who took over power in 2015 and is serving his second term in office which will end on May 29.
She said for fairness, equity and justice, it was natural to zone the position back to the south, which the APC did.
“First, we give God the glory and this is an endorsement of APC’s hard work in Cross River, courtesy of Governor Ayade.
“APC in Cross River was rational enough to zone its governorship position back to the south after 16 years.
“Beyond this, APC was very careful in choosing a very formidable candidate, one who is the man of people, very experienced and accessible, smart and with a listening ear.
“We are confident that he will continue with the very good track record of Gov. Ayade. He will increase focus on health, education, agriculture and other sectors.
“We are happy that he defeated other candidates in the state because he was indeed the peoples candidate,” she said.
Edu expressed hope that the Governor-elect would continue with the industrialisation drive of Governor Ayade with a view to promoting the state revenue coffers.
She called on all others who contested and failed to join hands with the governor-elect and build Cross River State for good.
She gave assurance that the governor-elect would work with the President-elect, Sen. Bola Tinubu, in attracting development to the state.
The state Returning Officer for INEC, Prof. Teddy Adies, of the Federal University, Otuoke, Bayelsa, had earlier announced Sen. Otu as the winner of the March 18 polls.
Adies said that the APC candidate polled 258,619 votes to emerge winner, while his closest rival and candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Sen. Sandy Onor, polled 179,636 votes.
Accept Defeat, PDP Tells Omo-Agege
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Delta Chapter, has called on the All Progressives Congress (APC) Governorship Candidate, Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege, to accept the outcome of the governorship election in the state.
The party also urged Omo-Agege to extend the olive branch by congratulating the PDP candidate, Sheriff Oborevwori, who was already coasting home to victory following the Saturday, March 18 governorship poll in the state.
This is contained in a statement on Monday in Asaba, by the State Commissioner for Information, Mr Charles Aniagwu.
Aniagwu noted that contrary to the wrongful assertion by the APC, the state governorship and House of Assembly elections followed due process and was conducted in consonance with relevant laws especially the Electoral Act 2022 as amended.
He also noted that the results duly collated from the various units, wards and local government areas had so far been adjudged as free, fair, credible and transparent, adding that winners have been emerging across the state constituencies.
“It is, however, disturbing that the APC that unleashed terror on innocent voters in Ughelli North Local Government Area (LGA) and parts of Ethiope West LGA could turn around to point accusing fingers at others.
“So far, 24 LGAs have been duly collated and the PDP won in 20 LGAs, while the APC won in four LGAs with just only one LGA result to go out of the 25 LGA of the state.
“The APC, having won six state constituencies cannot turn around to describe the election as non-complying with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2022 as amended”, he said.
The Commissioner, while thanking the people of the state for their unalloyed support and solidarity with the PDP, said, “we promised to continue delivering on the Gov. Ifeanyi Okowa mandate till the last day of this administration.
“We, therefore, call on the APC governorship candidate and Deputy President of the Senate, Sen. Ovie Omo-Agege to do the needful expected of democrats.
“He (Omo-Agege) should call on his brother, the PDP governorship candidate, Sheriff Oborevwori to congratulate him on his well deserved victory at the polls”.
APC’s Sen. Otu Wins C’River Governorship
Sen. Bassey Otu of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has won the governorship election in Cross River State after winning in 15 out of the 18 Local Government Areas in the state.
Announcing the result on Monday at the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) Collation Centre in Calabar, the Returning Officer, Prof. Teddy Adies, said APC polled 258,619 votes.
He said the People Democratic Party got 179,636 votes while the Labour Party garnered 5,957 votes.
According to him, the total number of registered voters was 1,766,466, accredited voters 466,294, valid votes 451,933, and void votes 8,923.
“Eleven political parties participated in this election and for the results to get to us here at the state level, it had to pass through the Polling Units, the Ward Collation Centres and the collation centre at the the Local Government Levels.
“Otu of the APC after satisfying the requirement of the law has been returned elected,” the Returning Officer said.
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