Ahead of the 2019 governorship battle in Akwa Ibom State, there have been suspicions that the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Deacon Udom Gabriel Emmanuel like his Cross River State counterpart, Professor Benedict Ayade defect to the All Progressive Congress, APC.
A source at the APC told The Sensor that Mr. Emmanuel was making moves to defect to APC in order to create a distinct political image for himself and have a smooth sail in the 2019 governorship election, since the federal might which is controlled by the APC has a way of influencing people to vote at the state level.
According to our source the Governor has a warm relationship with the APC federal government. Citing the recent Christmas day visit of the Chairman of the Governors Forum, Alhaji Abdulazeez Yari of Zamfara State, the Sokoto State Governor, Alhaji Aminu Tambuwal and other Northern Governors as a testimony to Udom’s closeness to the powers that be in APC.
Our source, however, revealed that the APC structure in Akwa Ibom State controlled by its 2015 governorship candidate, Obong Umana Okon Umana and the Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) Obong Nsima Ekere may stop Governor Emmanuel from joining the party.
Our source maintained that Governor Emmanuel may have realized that he has no way of taking over the structure from Ekere and Umana, the same way Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Usani Usani Uyuru has refused to hand over the structure of APC to Ayade in Cross river State.
The Sensor gathered however that in the days ahead nobody can predict the move that either the Northern cabal will make to win Udom or what the Governor may decide to do to advance his political future.
In a swift reaction, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr. Ekerete Udoh described the report as a lie that should be ignored by the people of Akwa Ibom State.
He said the Governor is totally committed to the ideals and principles of the Peoples Democratic party, PDP and would not trade a treasure like the PDP with any other thing.
The Chief Press Secretary said “There is no truth in this malicious rumour. The Governor remains a committed and loyal member of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)
It will be recalled that the PDP in an enlarged caucus meeting where over five hundred of its state, chapter and ward executives met recently, passed a vote of confidence on Gov. Emmanuel for his leadership style and achievements.
They went ahead to declare their support for him in the 2019 governorship elections.