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Sunday, January 26, 2020

BOYCOTT OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY RERUN OF SATURDAY, JANUARY 25, 2020 IN ESSIEN UDIM LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, AKWA IBOM STATE

PRESS STATEMENT: BOYCOTT OF THE NATIONAL ASSEMBLY RERUN OF SATURDAY, JANUARY 25, 2020 IN ESSIEN UDIM LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, AKWA IBOM STATE


As the candidate of the All Progressive Congress in the Appeal Court ordered rerun for Ikot Ekpene/Essien Udim/Obot Akara Federal Constituency, taking place in Essien Udim Local Government Area on Saturday, January 25, 2020, it has become imperative for me, having carefully reviewed events preparatory to the election to state as follows:
That I have no faith in the required legal/
administrative impartiality of the Resident Electoral Commissioner for Akwa Ibom State, Barr. Mike Igini, to conduct a free and fair election given his celebrated anti-APC stance over time;
That right from the first election conducted on February 23, 2019, one didn’t need spectacles to glean the very biased disposition of the REC, Barr. Igini who, using his office as the head of INEC in Akwa Ibom State, cancelled 52, 265 valid votes cast in my favour in Essien Udim Local Government Area and declared my opponent with just 13,977 votes as winner of the said election;
That although myriad protests were registered against the Akwa Ibom State REC, Barr. Mike Igini before and after the 2019 general election, the authorities of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) have retained him in that position thereby seeming to legitimize his notorious compromising and manipulative disposition against the All Progressive Congress in Akwa Ibom State;
That having refused to recuse himself from the conduct of the forth coming rerun in Essien Udim, Barr. Mike Igini has perfected plans to frustrate the likelihood of the APC winning in any of the positions to be contested for in the January 25, 2020 rerun. A typical example, among others, is the recent redeployment of the former Electoral Officer for Essien Udim, Barr. Charles Ibiapuye to Udung Uko L.G.A. and his replacement with Barr. Vincent Ogene who happens to be Barr. Mike Igini’s cousin from Delta State. It is curious to note that among all the 31 Electoral Officers in Akwa Ibom State, the REC, Barr. Mike Igini did not find any of them fit to be posted to Essein Udim, rather, he imported his blood relation whose last posting was Anambra State, with the inglorious ambition to perfect his rigging template in the Essien Udim rerun. It would also be recalled that Barr. Ibiapuye (the former Electoral Officer for Essien Udim) was believed to have refused to testify at the election tribunal because of his conviction that the cancellation of 52,265 votes cast for me in the February 23, 2019 National Assembly election result in Essien Udim was an aberration;
That in the light of the foregoing, I have decided to boycott the January 25, 2020 rerun in Essien Udim Local Government Area since it is commonsensical that neither fair election nor valid results can be obtained from an election conducted by the same compromising umpire in the ilk of Barr. Mike Igini;
Painful as the outcome of this decision implies, especially to my teeming supporters, I urge them to remain resolute and committed to the ideals of our great party, knowing that there is a future that is greater than today despite current setbacks.
Thank you very much.
Long live the All Progressive Congress!
Long live Ikot Ekpene/Essien Udim/ Obot Akara Federal Constituency!
Long live the Fedearl Republic of Nigeria!
Rt. Hon. Emmanuel Akpan
Former Member Representing Ikot Ekpene/Essien Udim/Obot Akara Federal Constituency and Candidate of the All Progressivve Congress.

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