Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, has alleged that the Mike Igini, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), is a compromised official and an avowed enemy of APC. He stated that his leadership of the electoral body may mean a bad omen for the APC.
Recall that the Appeal Court in Calabar, the state capital, had ordered a rerun election to be conducted only in Essien Udim local government area.
Meanwhile, Akpabio has declared his support for Ekperikpe Ekpo, a former member of the House of Representatives.
The Minister, in a statement, signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Anietie Ekong, issued to reporters on Monday, said, "We have no faith in Igini. Igini is a compromised official and avowed enemy of APC. We are distraught and doubtful of a change of posture and therefore cautious to go into a fresh election while Igini remains the REC."
He reiterated that “Only a foolish survivor would ask the same hired assassin to extract the bullet from his body,” he said.
Speaking on his withdrawal from the senatorial rerun, Akpabio said, “APC had, through the National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole and the then acting national secretary, Victor Giadom, in compliance with the requirement for 45 days notice to be given for the substitution of candidates, written to INEC chairman to submit Ekpo’s name as Akpabio’s replacement in the election. This was acknowledged by INEC."
He further stated that “Having withdrawn from the contest to face higher national responsibilities, we caution political jobbers to desist forthwith from their planned smear campaigns against Akpabio and unnecessarily heating up the polity."
Therefore, the statement read, “Akpabio will have no choice than to invoke the full weight of the law against anyone who engages in any plot to smear his name through sponsored, fabricated petitions. A word is enough for the wise.”