By UbongAbasi Ise
The Akwa Ibom State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has come out to challenge the incumbent state governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel on the originality of the idea to name Akwa Ibom airport after ex-governor Victor Attah.
In a statement released on Monday and signed by the APC’s State Chairman, Mr. Ini Okopido, the party said the immortalization of Arc. (Obong) Victor Attah by naming the state-owned international airport after him was a brainchild of their governorship candidate, Obong (Dr.) Nsima Ekere, who made the pronouncement as far back as September this year.
“We however wish to quickly note that it was indeed our governorship candidate, Mr. Nsima Ekere, who first mooted the idea of honouring Obong Attah in this manner as far back as last September. At a rally in Uyo then, Mr. Ekere had announced that he would, on assumption of office as governor next year, name the airport after our beloved former governor, now deservedly regarded as the father of modern Akwa Ibom State. Mr Ekere had also repeated this promise at other more occasions,” the statement reads.
APC further drew attention of the public to its birthday congratulatory message sent to Obong Attah which was published in The Nation newspaper of Friday, 16th November. The message reads: “as a Party, we therefore commend our governorship candidate, Obong Nsima Ekere, for his promise to name the state airport after this great icon as soon as he assumes office in 2019. It is an honour well deserved.”
In the statement, the party expressed displeasure over Governor Udom Emmanuel’s failure to acknowledge Obong Nsima Ekere who put forward the idea.
“We therefore note that Governor Udom Emmanuel ought to have duly acknowledged Mr Nsima Ekere for putting forward this idea publicly as far back as over two months ago. It is okay for a governor to borrow an idea or a thought or even an inspiration from the citizens, but it is quite unacceptable, almost to a point of dishonesty for him not to acknowledge it,” the party stressed.
Nevertheless, Akwa Ibom state has congratulated Arc. Attah on the naming of the state-owned airport after him by the state government, adding, “it is a well-deserved honour indeed.”