Stakeholders of the All Progressives Congress in Akwa Ibom have again rejected the choice of the Niger Delta Affairs Minister, Senator Godswill Akpabio as leader of the party in the state.
A group within the party led by a former two-time military administrator of Rivers and Ogun states, Group Captain Sam Ewang(retd) had last month endorsed Akpabio as the APC leader in the state.
But in an enlarged second stakeholders meeting of the party held on Sunday at SheerGrace Arena, the party kicked against the unilateral decision of the Ewang group to appoint Akpabio as the party’s leader in the state.
The meeting was attended by the National Caretaker Secretary of the APC, Senator John Akpanuodehe, the managing director of the Oli and Gas Free Trade Zone Authority, Obong Umana Okon Umana.
Others were the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Ita Enang, the sole administrator of the Niger Delta Development Commission, Mr. Efiong Akwa, Group Captain Sam Ewang(retd) among others.
Akpabio was absent at the meeting but sent in an apology letter.
In a communique issued at the end of the meeting, stakeholders said, ” that the stakeholders endorse the decision of the State Executive Committee (SEC) to declare as a nullity the unilateral proclamation and announcement of Senator Godswill Akpabio, as the State Party Leader of APC in gross violation of the Party’s Constitution in the unauthorised and illegal Stakeholders meeting of Sunday, March 28, 2021.
”That the Party hereby reminds every member and the general public that the State Chairman (or Caretaker Chairman as applicable here) is the Chairman of the State Caucus as provided for in Article 12.9 Sub (i) of the party Constitution (October 2014 As Amended) and remains the Party Leader in the State until further notice”.
The communique dismissed the insinuation that there were factions in the party and urged all leaders of the party holding appointive positions to work for the interest and unity of the party.
Also, the party in the communique thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for the successes his administration especially in the areas of tackling corruption, economic and security challenges in the country.