Akwa Ibom PDP and the reality of Akpabio’s defection
By Anietie Ekong
In the last few hours the internet has been abuzz with syndicated fake stories by agents of the Akwa Ibom State government and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) all attempting to make false imputation to Senator Godswill Akpabio.
Obviously, agents of the government and the party have not yet accepted the reality that the former Senate Minority Leader who has been the political oxygen that sustained the party in the state has moved on. They have churned out fantastically fake stories all in a bid to deceive the gullible and perhaps in their wishful thinking, force back the hands of the clock.
We are reliably informed that a certain media aide of Govenor Udom Emmanuel who had previously praised Senator Akpabio to high heavens, is the one churning out these distasteful articles of lies against Senator Akpabio. Again we are told that their thinking is that having lost Senator Godswill Akpabio, the political life support machine that sustained the party in the state, the PDP stand no chance in the next gubernatorial election in Akwa Ibom State and with the prospect of job losses, the Senator must be maligned as much as possible if they cannot get his support.
I have bad news for them: no amount of falsehood, fake news, propaganda and mischief will distract Senator Akpabio from his avowed task of linking Akwa Ibom State with the centre for the benefit of Akwa Ibom people.
Firstly, they said Senator Akpabio was supporting former Vice-president Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and had reached out to him to be running mate. For their information Akpabio’s support for Alhaji Atiku Abubakar was in the past when Senator Akpabio was a member of the PDP. It was an open event when Alhaji Atiku Abubakar visited Senator Akpabio in his country home in Ukana, Essien Udim Local Government. So digging up an old picture of that event will not bring the Senator back to the PDP. He is gone and gone for good.
Meanwhile while they were working themselves hoarse to sell this piece of lie, the Senator was at the national convention of the All Progressives Congress on Saturday to drum up support for President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC. Truth is Senator Akpabio’s politics is not driven by the position he is seeking and so he is not interested in being the running mate to anybody in a party he had bade farewell to. The people of Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial District have variously expressed their desire for the Senator to return to the Red Chambers and continue to give them superlative representation. That is his focus.
Next in their fertile imagination they cooked up a supposed phone call from Senator Akpabio to Alhaji Atiku Abubakar which they claim the former Vice-president ignored. Nothing could be further from the truth. Senator Akpabio’s preoccupation in the past two months since he uncommonly defected to the APC has been to work with other stakeholders to build the party into a formidable machine that could win elections at all levels in the state. And even his greatest haters has grudgingly accepted that there has been a big boost to the fortunes of the party in the state. Someone recently observed that before now everyone who had won the PDP ticket in the primaries in Akwa Ibom State would have gone home to await swearing in. It was taken for granted that they would win the general elections. But not anymore. Conversely, there’s a renewed thinking that with the resurgence of the APC in Akwa Ibom State after Senator Akpabio’s entry into the party, the APC is the ruling party in waiting in the state.
This is the reality that has put the state government propaganda machinery into full throttle to churn out all manner of lies against Senator Akpabio.
For the sake of emphasis it bears repetition that Senator Godswill Akpabio is now a member of the All Progressives Congress and it will be highly ridiculous for the PDP to jettison all their qualified members and seek to pick a presidential running mate from a member of another political party. Of course we know that this scenario only exists in the infantile imagination of Akwa Ibom State government and PDP propagandists. Neither had Senator Akpabio made any phone call to Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, talk less of the former Vice-president not picking up the calls. Again this is imagination gone wild.
This is a season of politicking but responsible politics does not mean a resort to outright lies and fabrications as done by the Akwa Ibom State government media team using fake names. Senator Godswill Akpabio will never be distracted by these media minions whose imagination of the prospect of imminent job losses have driven them to the frenzy of churning out these distasteful lies to cast doubts in the minds of the people. But Akwa Ibom people are not daft. Many people have called me not to bother to dignify these gutter pieces as the day of reckoning is fast approaching.