Governor Emmanuel to formally declare second term bid today

Udom Emmanuel
Akwa Ibom governor, Udom Emmanuel

The Akwa Ibom governor, Udom Emmanuel, will today declare his intention to seek a second term in office.

The declaration, which is scheduled to take place at the state’s international stadium in Uyo, is expected to be witnessed by a large crowd of supporters from the different parts of the state.

“Tomorrow, just as I did in 2014, I will submit myself again as your Servant- Leader and ask for your support for a second term. I know I can always count on your support, so the Akwa Ibom story will continue to be told in poetry and in prose. God bless you!” Mr Emmanuel said, Thursday, on Twitter, using his personal Twitter handle @MrUdomEmmanuel.

The ruling party in Akwa Ibom, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has been organising several political meetings and rallies in the state since a senator, Godswill Akpabio, defected a few days ago from the party to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The defection of Mr Akpabio, a former governor of the state, is seen as a major threat to Mr Emmanuel’s re-election.

Governor Emmanuel’s declaration on Friday, on the platform of the PDP, would bring an end to speculations that he was planning to defect to the APC.

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Top APC leaders in the state, including the state caucus chairman of APC, Don Etiebet, had told PREMIUM TIMES that the governor had reached out to the national leadership of the party on his “planned defection”.

“Honestly, I can tell you because I have been aware of it. It has been going on for a long time. His interest in joining APC is not new at all. The only thing is that Godswill Akpabio beat him up to it,” Mr Etiebet said.

“He has realised that APC has become very strong in the state and as such his chances of retaining his position as governor have become very slim,” Mr Etiebet said on August 18.

The governor’s adviser on politics, Ekong Sampson, dismissed the speculations as being “absolutely untrue”.

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