…Says He’s One Too Beat
A socio-political group rooting for the emergence of former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Senator Godswill Akpabio, as the President of the incoming 10th Senate, The Godswill Project, TGP, has debunked tbe insinuation making the rounds that the former governor was no longer in the race.
In a statement issued and signed by the convener of the group, Femi Odere, it said that former Governor Akpabio is not only in the race, but he is the one to beat in upcoming battle for the head of the 10th National Assembly.
The statement stated, “Our attention has been drawn to the concoction making the rounds as news that the two-term former governor of Akwa Ibom State, a former Senate Minority Leader, and a senator, who will soon commence his second term in the 10th National Assembly, His Excellency Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio, has dropped out of the race for the Senate President.
“It may not have been necessary to dignify this jejune, insidious, and mischievous piece of information with a response, if only because of the glaring inconsistencies and lack of empirical evidence that characterized the so-called withdrawal of the uncommon Nigerian political leader. But respond we must, because of the senator’s teeming supporters across the length and breadth of Nigeria, including Nigerians in the diaspora, who has, and continues, to inundate us with calls and messages to ascertain the veracity of this mischievous information hence this clarification.”
Insisting that there is no iota of truth in the misinformation making the rounds, Odere said, “We’re making it abundantly clear that at no time did Senator Akpabio entertain the thought of withdrawing from the Senate Presidency race, let alone an actual withdrawal. The purveyors of this badly constructed piece of information have their thinking apparatuses at the soles of their feet, otherwise, why would someone who’s a frontrunner for the Number Three position in the country’s political leadership jettison this political pursuit only to “be pursuing a ministerial appointment” of the same ministry which was given to him on a platter in the recent past, a position in which he acquitted himself creditably well with superlative accomplishments. Does that make any sense?
“The allusion that Senator Akpabio dropped his bid for the Senate President “because of the decision of the ruling APC to zone the position to the South-East” is at best an impossible prayer of these purveyors of falsehood that the position of the Senate President would be the exclusive preserve of the South-East region in the 10th National Assembly. Nothing can be farther from the truth than this.
“Even if we must indulge the purveyors of this misinformation to wallow in their delusion that only the senators-elect from the South-East extraction would the party, the All Progressives Congress, APC, allow to contest the Senate Presidency, it’s curious why they included Senators Jibrin Barau, APC-Kano North; Sani Musa, APC-Niger East; Ali Ndume, APC-Borno South; former governor of Zamfara State, Abdulaziz Yari, APC-Zamfara West, among the contestants.”
Odere insisted that “it is totally untrue and most certainly a figment of their imagination that Senator Akpabio ‘told his loyalists and aides to tone down their campaign for his Senate presidential ambition in the media to soften the ground to achieve his ministerial reappointment in Tinubu’s cabinet.’ If anything, Senator Akpabio’s coast is getting larger by the day with the support and endorsement he continues to garner in his bid for the Senate President.”
The group added that the chill that Akpabio’s ambition has sent down the spines of some contestants can be understood because they know that the only way for them to have a fighting chance in this race is either to de-market Senator Akpabio, or find an avenue, however egregious, to knock him out of the race. It’s therefore inconceivable that they will engage in all manners of propaganda and subterfuge with the hope that something would stick to the senator to beat.
TGP averred that Akpabio’s popularity “is not only very strong among his colleagues in the red chamber, but also among Nigerians at large,” adding that Senator Akpabio was widely known as the “uncommon governor” in his eight years as the governor of Akwa Ibom State because of his unprecedented achievements.
The statement further added that the former governor “would no doubt be a rare Senate President in the 10th National Assembly, because of the robust, growth-enhanced, development-driven legislations that would definitely become the hallmark of the coming Tinubu administration.”