By Aminu Imam
Several Akwa Ibom state leaders, elders and stakeholders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday cried out that the party in the state has been totally appropriated as the property of the present state governor, Chief Godswill Akpabio.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja yesterday, former governor of the state, Obong Victor Attah said, “Nowhere else in this federation has this lack of internal democracy plagued our party in such a severe manner as in Akwa Ibom state.
“Several unwholesome developments within the party since 2008 forced hundreds of good people of our dear state to abandon our party –an occurrence which did not auger well for party.
“We had catalogued these developments during our presentation to the South –South Integration Committee and proffered genuine solutions but have observed that nothing has changed in the state.
“We state with emphasis, that in view of the widespread disenchantment in the state PDP and Akwa Ibom state as a whole, His Excellency, Chief Godswill Obot Akpabio, cannot claim to be able to single-handedly deliver the votes of Akwa Ibom people to the President in 2015.
He added: “Since also, politics is a game of numbers and others parties have for some time now been engaged in an aggressive membership drive, we call upon our party at the national level to view as sabotage and as a serious anti-party offence, the removal of our membership registers by
the state leadership of the party, since six months ago, from all the 329 wards to the governor’s lodge or the state party secretariat in Uyo.
“We have therefore resolved that these registers must be returned to the wards forthwith to enable all intending new members to be registered ahead of the ward congresses, and we shall not condone any falsification or or fraudulent changes in these registers”, he further said.
He affirmed that “In firm support of the position of the acting National Chairman, the NWC and the President, we wish to restate our resolute stand against imposition of any candidate.
“A level-playing field cannot be had if the composition of the Electoral College consisting of delegates is skewed. It is imperative therefore that the delegates list must be authentication. We are aware that agent of government in the state have already prepared fraudulent lists of delegates ahead of the used for the gubernatorial primary election must be authenticated by Chief Godswill Akpabio, former governor Obong Victor Attah, Atuekong Don Etiebet and former PDP National Vice-Chairman, South-South zone, Chief Edet Nkpubre.
“We, therefore, urge the national leadership of the party to be very firm in ensuring that a level-playing field is established for all aspirants and to sanction any NWC member found to be aiding and abetting the imposition of any person or group of persons. If a consensus arrangement is to be adopted, it must be done in such a manner as to strengthen democracy”, he declared.