The All Progressives Congress candidate for Akwa Ibom North-West Senatorial District in the 2023 general election, and Deputy Inspector-General of Police, Mr. Udom Ekpoudom (retd.), has vowed that he will not relinquish the APC senatorial district ticket which he won on May 27, 2022 to Senator Godswill Akpabio or anyone, no matter the pressure on him.
The State Chairman of the party, Mr. Stephen Ntuekpo, had, citing security infractions in the May 27 primary in the district, claimed he was directed to conduct a fresh primary by the national headquarters of the party on June 8, 2022, which produced the former Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Akpabio as the winner, having scored a total of 478 votes out of 512 accredited delegates.
But a statement on Sunday by Ekpoudum’s campaign Director-General, Hon. Uwem Udoma; Secretary, Obong Etokakpan, and the campaign’s Director of Media and Publicity, Peter Idiong, described the June 8, 2022 midnight primary that produced senator Godswill as “scam, unconstitutional, deceitful and legally defective.”
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The statement assured the APC members in the Senatorial district that he will “under no circumstance, relinquish, withdraw or be substituted no matter the degree of pressure and inducement dangled by anyone.”
According to the statement, the mandate freely and expressly given to him to fly the APC ticket for next year’s senatorial election is not a commodity for buying and selling.
“The 2023 DIG Udom Ekpoudom Senatorial Campaign Organisation has observed an absurd, ridiculous and highly provocative conspiracy with respect to the APC Akwa Ibom North-West Senatorial District Senate primary election, validly won by Udom Ekpoudom. We vehemently wish to reiterate and state as follows;
“That DIG Udom Ekpoudom, the Standard Bearer is a very disciplined, cultured and law-abiding citizen with the national toga of Officer of Niger, hence, he has a high regards for extant laws of any establishment.
“Recall that Ekpoudom duly participated in the Akwa Ibom North-West APC Senatorial District Primary Election held on Friday, May 27, 2022, in line with the 2023 Election Timetable and guideline of our party.
“Succinctly, the primary election was properly monitored by INEC as constitutionally required and Udom Ekpoudom, was victorious and declared the winner and the party’s flagbearer.
“Sequel to the aforementioned, we want to state categorically and without any ambiguity, that at no time did our party, the APC put our candidate on notice of any cancellation of the primary election or that of conducting another senatorial primary for the Akwa Ibom North-West senatorial seat,” the statement read in part.
The campaign organisation vowed that the mandate given to Udom Ekpoudom to contest next year’s senatorial election remained sacrosanct which would be judiciously guarded and protected.
“The purported “scam election” held on Thursday, June 8, 2022, at the Skills Acquisition Centre in Ikot Ekpene, is nothing but illegal, deceitful, unconstitutional, and legally defective,” the statement further said.