THE National Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), John Akpanudoedehe, has declared that the party withdrew from the just concluded council elections in Akwa Ibom State to avoid heating up the polity.
He stated this while celebrating his 57th birthday with members of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ) at its secretariat in Uyo, yesterday.
That the APC boycotted the elections alleging that the PDP used the Akwa Ibom State Independent Electoral Commission (ASIEC) to create wards with a view to favouring the party.
He explained that APC took the decision to boycott the elections for peace to reign, adding: “We decided that the APC would not participate in the elections because of the need not to overheat the polity.”
The former Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and leader of opposition in the state, recalled that destruction and arson took place when he contested the governorship on the platform of the then Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in 2011, lamenting that the mayhem was wrongly attributed to him.
Akpanudoedehe, who is currently a member, board of the Nigeria Ports Authority (NPA), decried the attack on him and his campaign team at Ikot Ekpene, in the run-up to the contest, which also fuelled the 2011 mayhem.
He said the APC had to allow the PDP to monopolise the council elections to avoid another round of violence.
“However, ahead of the 2023 general elections, the party has undertaken a rebuilding process and would get its acts right for the exercise, especially with the recent reconciliation drive towards entrenching best practices for effective opposition.
“There is no crisis in Akwa Ibom APC. We are united because we recently had a reconciliation meeting and we all have agreed for peace to reign in the party, except those who were not at the meeting,” he said.
He also commended the Akwa Ibom Council of the (NUJ) led by Comrade Amos Etuk, for offering the opposition the platform to ventilate its views on leadership, explaining that the state PDP might not elevate governance for the common good of the people.
Akpanudoedehe cautioned Nigerians against following the sentiments of politicians and political parties blindly, but should support those with good ideas, adding: “Any government in power will not forget the media because without the media, there would not have been any democracy in the world.”
He charged the NUJ to be accommodating to all political parties for equity, fairness and justice.
In this article: