…Says He Is Competent, Has Good Track Record
…As Senator OBA Pledges To Usher A’Ibom Into Prosperity As Governor
By Kenneth Jude
Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Uyo Senatorial District Leaders Forum (USDLF) has endorsed Obong Bassey Albert (OBA) for governor.
The Forum made their position known on Saturday, September 10, 2022 at a reception and endorsement ceremony they organised for the senator held at Anua Street in Uyo Local Government Area of Akwa Ibom State.
They based their decision on what they described as the senator’s antecedents which dates back to his time as a banker and Commissioner for Finance as well as his excellent services as Senator representing Akwa Ibom North East Senatorial District.
OBA, they said is their preferred successor to Governor Udom Emmanuel on grounds that he has the capacity and competence to lead Akwa Ibom State as Governor from 2023.
Leader of USDLF, Mkpisong (Obong) Ukpong Dan Umoh, said the forum has decided to support OBA “because of his laudable track records in the banking sector where he rose to the lofty position of Vice President of First City Monument Bank (FCMB) and later, Commissioner for Finance in Akwa Ibom State, during which period he held the position of Chairman of Inter-ministerial Direct Labour Projects.”
He stated that as a forum of patriots, they “are irrevocably committed to achieving equity so that there will be genuine progress for our senatorial district and the entire state, hence our resolve to be upright on the issue of 2023 Governorship in Akwa Ibom State.”
He noted that “there has been an established rotational principle on the occupation of political offices, particularly as it concerns the Office of the governor, adding that “two of the three federal constituencies have previously occupied the Office of the Governor. Etinan Federal Constituency produced His Excellency, Obong Akpan Isemin as well as His Excellency, Otuekong Idongesit Okon Nkanga while Uyo Federal Constituency had Arc. (Obong) Victor Attah.
“The picture is very clear therefore that the sure thing to do is to give a chance to Itu Federal Constituency for the 2023 Governorship in Akwa Ibom State. As Eleanor Roosevelt stated, “Justice cannot be for one side alone but must be for both.” As men of honour, we, the Uyo Senatorial District Leaders Forum cannot do otherwise but to rise and give our unreserved backing to a credible candidate from Itu Federal Constituency.”
Obong Umoh said the reception for OBA is a demonstration of their resolve to support and give him their total backing as someone eminently qualified from Itu Federal Constituency that is duly favoured by the existing zoning policy.
“We have taken this decision as the conscience of the people of Uyo Senatorial District made up of Etinan, Uyo, Ibesikpo Asutan, Nsit Ibom, Ibiono Ibom, Nsit Ubium, Uruan, Itu and Nsit Atai Local Government Areas.”
He called on the people not to embark on a fist of might on the 2023 governorship election, but should rather stay on the path of truth, equity and justice so that the state can enjoy enduring peace and concord.
“Let the entire state know that if this laudable rotational principle is disrupted, the consequences will exacerbate in future. It is therefore advisable that we avoid a venture of might in Akwa Ibom State politics and do that which is just and fair,” he noted.
The highpoint of the occasion was the official endorsement of Senator Bassey Albert Akpan by the forum. They equally presented a Holy Bible to the senator and affirmed their support for him with prayers and blessings.
Responding, Senator Albert who thanked the forum for deeming it fit to support his governorship ambition, said he was humbled by the their endorsement, while pledging not to disappoint the people if he becomes governor.
He said he is the most prepared of all those seeking to be governor, adding that he is the best and most experienced to mount the governorship seat of the state come 2023.
He noted that he has lived his life for humanity both in the private and public sector, which among other things, has led him to train about 481 undergraduates citizens of the state.
He assured that his era as governor will bring prosperity to Akwa Ibom State, adding that he will not relent in fighting the cause of Itu/Ibiono Federal Constituency as well as the entire state.
OBA paid tributes to Former Governor Godswill Akpabio for discovering and giving him a lifetime opportunity, stating that he will never betray the state, but will always stand for equity and justice. “The God of justice will reward me,” he said.
Speaking further, he said “I was competent to be governor in 2015 but it was not the turn of Uyo Senatorial District. I was prevailed upon to see reasons why Eket Senatorial District should produce the next governor then. I supported Governor Udom Emmanuel because God’s time is the best. I went to the Senate and that’s what God wanted at that time. Gov. Emmanuel used to call me the last man standing and OBA of Africa. I am still the last man standing. I’m tracing history not that I’m feeling entitled, but I’m here to say that of all those aspiring to be governor, I’m the most prepared.”
His running mate, AIG Asuquo Amba (rtd) said his teaming up with OBA will bring real peace and economic prosperity to the state.
On his part, the chairman of OBA’s campaign organisation, Sir Emem Akpabio called on the people of Uyo Senatorial District to support OBA to become governor of the state, saying that as senator, he has represented the entire state well.
“Annang nation is solidly behind you, because we’re not talking about ethnicity but pedigree and competence” he added.
The event was attended by executive members and stakeholders of Uyo Senatorial District Forum, the chairman of the Young Progressive Party (YPP) in the state, Pastor Nyeneime Andy, party officials and supporters of Obong Bassey Albert.