The need for stakeholders of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in Akwa Ibom State to get over disagreements arising from recently conducted congresses of the party and foster a united front, if it must challenge the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in 2019, has been advocated by a onetime Minister of State for FCT, Senator John Akpan Udoedeghe.
Senator Udoedeghe made the revelation at his Uyo residence on Thursday, while fielding questions in the ongoing tweet meet organized by the Coalition of Online Publishers Akwa Ibom State (COOPA) as part of programmes to mark Nigeria’s 19th democracy day celebration.
Arguing that it was no time for exchanges, the strongman of Uyo politics, who in 2015 lost the APC guber ticket to Obong Umana Okon Umana, refuted claims that the current challenges facing the party after the congresses were insurmountable, stating that there were moves to harmonize aggrieved members whose aspirations to the party’s leadership were unsuccessful.
Udoedeghe who averred to the supremacy and popularity of the Peoples Democratic Party in the state, warned his party men against allowing personal interests to guide their actions, as the task of defeating the ruling party in the state required focus and more sacrifices.
He narrated the prospects of an APC-led government in the state, saying it was time to do more than hurl insults on leadership of the state, calling for a change of approach as throwing tantrums were no workable tactics, having proven futile in the past, and promising to respect the accord recently struck by the party leaders in the State.
The controversial politician however expressed his regards for Governor Udom Emmanuel, whom he noted has shown maturity in leadership of the State, reiterating the need to respect the office of the Governor, even as he acknowledged the tolerant and focused disposition of the state chief executive, but declined comment when asked about his rating of the administration.
On his political future, Udoedeghe announced plans to officially declare for the 2019 gubernatorial race; pointing the need for the Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Obong Nsima Ekere not to resign his appointment for the contest, especially as those he referred to as “real owners” of the APC in the state were yet to get anything.
Describing the recent decision of the immediate past APC State Executive to zone the guber position to Eket Senatorial District as infantile gossip, the former minister, in advancing his motivation about joining the 2019 race said zoning was alien to the APC, stating that those who were involved in the sham only made to justify the cravings of their paymaster.
Congratulating Senator Udoedeghe on his recent wedding in Abuja, the COOPA Chancellor, Ifreke Nseowo commended his availability for the tweet meet, acknowledging that revelations from the engagements would be helpful as the state advances towards greater socioeconomic and political growth.