Akpabio accused of planning to use Federal might to influence election

Senator Godswill Akpabio, a former Senate Minority Leader and Senator representing Akwa Ibom North West has been accused by different individuals from his state of attempting to influence the general elections in Akwa Ibom using ‘federal might’

On Thursday evening, a Facebook user, Aniebet Jerome released a transcript of a speech made by Senator Akpabio while speaking at Ikot Ekpene Plaza to Ikot Ekpene youths, which some have claimed reeks of his plan to use federal interference.

Aniebet’s Facebook post reads:“In Akwa Ibom State, President Buhari has provided adequate security for the elections here.As I speak, we have 1 Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) in Akwa Ibom now. Each Senatorial District in Akwa Ibom State has a Deputy Inspector General of Police to be in charge of security of the Senatorial District.

“Each Senatorial District in Akwa Ibom State a Commissioner of Police to supervise the security of the district, in addition to the 2 Squadrons of Troop provided for each of the districts. We will provide their control numbers in case anything happens in your various polling units.

The above quote accredited to the former Akwa Ibom State Governor lends credence to a letter purportedly written by him to the office of the Chief of Staff of Nigeria in November, 2018.

In a copy of the letter obtained from The Cable, Akpabio reportedly solicited for powers from the Aso Rock seat of power asking for the release of security operatives who will suppress voters in order to disenfranchise them and ensure voter turnout is low. 

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The letter also called for the full cooperation of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC). He reportedly said he wanted the electoral body to give them the result sheets and other materials ahead of time, preferably two days before the election and to allow them access to uncollected PVCs especially in areas where the PDP still has strong presence. He had also called for the creation of more polling stations so they could use the uncollected PVCs without hindrance.

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However, the letter has been described as “fake and forged” by Anietie Ekong, Akpabio’s special assistant (media) in a statement. Part of the statement read:The attention of the former Senate Minority Leader and Senator representing Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District, Senator Godswill Akpabio, CON has been drawn to a forged letter purportedly written by him to the Chief of Staff to the President titled: “Gratitude for your marvelous support to Akwa Ibom APC” and making the rounds in the social media.We wish to state categorically that the letter never emanated from the Distinguished Senator Godswill Akpabio. It is a poorly crafted piece of forgery and the figment of the imagination of the authors. A cursory look at the letter reveals the fakeness of the contents. For instance, the complimentary closing line reads, “Yours sincerely” and “Yours faithfully” in one letter!

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With an imminent defeat in the coming polls, we have always known that desperate politicians will be up to some tricks to gain some political mileage, but we never imagined they could go to the extent of committing forgery just to malign an opponent. Fortunately, the perpetrators are not ghosts. We have alerted security agencies to be on the look out for those who have either published or shared the sham document for an invitation to shed more light on its source.Once again, we wish to assure the teeming supporters of Senator Godswill Akpabio and the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Akwa Ibom State and beyond to remain focused, steadfast and unshaken in their commitment to resoundingly vote for President Muhammadu Buhari and all candidates of the party in the coming elections. According to the immortal words of the great Spanish writer, Miguel de Cervantes, “truth will rise above falsehood as oil above water.”

A Vanguard article by Dele Sobowale in 2018 fullysummarises the break down of communications between Senator Akpabio and his former godson, Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State. The article claims that Governor Udom got elected in the 2015 elections because Akpabio, who had the approval of the then President Goodluck Jonathan, employed force and a great deal of electoral sophistry.

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Udom had paid back his godfather by rebuffing the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) when they came calling for important information about Akpabio’s eight year tenure and the Akwa Ibom State Government (AKSG) even went on to challenge the commission in court. The honeymoon had ended when in a bid to end the commission from looking into his administration, he had jumped ship and joined the ruling party. Since joining the APC, there has been different accusations against him. One of such allegations is that he signed a pact to surrender the state to Jihadists.

Akwa lbom Conscience Movement, a group had released a statement accusing him and Nsima Ekere of signing an agreement to sign over the state to the Islamic Council and enforcing Sharia and making Islam the dominating religion in Nigeria. With all the accusations and counter-accusations, which one will you believe? What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments section

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