An analyst of Akwa Ibom State politics, Celestine Mel, says the miscalculation of Senator Bassey Albert, and a member of the House of Representatives, Onofiok Luke, paved the way for the immediate past Lands and Water Resources Commissioner, Pastor Umo Eno, to emerge as the governorship candidate of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.
Eno hauled 993 votes on Wednesday in Uyo, the state capital, to emerge the flag-bearer of the party in a widely boycotted delegates congress.
Governor Udom Emmanuel endorsed Eno early in January this year as his preferred successor as against Senator Albert believed to be a better contender in some quarters.
For Mel, 50% of the job for the now PDP governorship candidate, was done by Udom.
‘’Pastor Eno will be the candidate of the PDP for the governorship of Akwa Ibom come 2023. Albert and Luke have been defeated within their party, having voluntarily withdrawn from the contest’’, Mel said before the commencement of the delegates’ congress this Wednesday.
Adding, he said the situation highlights the need for ‘’all of us to learn lessons and adjust our today, because the things we do, may become the factors that would shape our destinies tomorrow. The unrighteousness of our politics savages politicians who dare to be different.
‘’As soon as Eno was unveiled, many of our people went up in arms to castigate him and the manner of his emergence. The uproar was so intense that many people forgot to even try to interrogate the anointed (pun intended) himself. To fill in the gaps, I asked the question: Why Not Umoh Eno?
‘’I wanted those who were bitterly opposed to his emergence to bring up their underlying reasons. I published that question on many platforms and sought public or private answers. The essence was to move the spotlight from the immaterial to the materially significant. I felt, we needed to x-ray the person to find his flaws, weaknesses and faults to determine if indeed, he was completely unfit for the office.
‘’Sadly, nobody could speak in concrete terms about the disqualifying factors against him, beyond watery and childish insinuations that Obong Attah and Gov. Udom should not have endorsed an unknown person; because Attah is an elder stateman and Udom is supposed to be neutral. Nobody spoke about the bad credentials of the Pastor. Nobody tried to expose his bad behaviours, his incompetence, his lack of experience, his failings and inabilities, etc. The focus was more on Udom and Attah, than the man who may most likely end up as our governor.
‘’The business of governance is not a joke, The seat of governor of a State cannot be farmed out as trophy to people who are perceived of being loyal to a political course or deserving of taking turns. It is not an item to use in updating the curriculum vitae of a perpetual politician. No. It is the seat that determines our collective welfare and wellbeing, by exploiting the resources collectively owned by all for the greatest benefit of the greatest majority.
‘’In a state with high youth unemployment, high rate of maternal mortality, frightening HIV/AIDS prevalence, broken roads and bridges, burgeoning population of out-of-school children, high rural/urban poverty, poor medical infrastructure, broken schools and dispensaries, etc., we need only the best and most experienced people on the ballot. The political parties need to ensure that whomsoever is thrown up as their candidate for the general elections, ticks the right boxes and would move the state in the right direction.
‘’I have privately interrogated the credentials of Pastor Umoh Eno, taking testimonies from people who have either worked with him or associated with him. They all agree that he does not joke with money and does not pretend about it.
‘’That corroborates with the respondent I narrated earlier. And I see such trait as a double edged sword. We indeed need a governor who does not joke with our money, for all the reasons in the world.
‘’Our debt profile requires frugality in managing our scarce resources, given that the next few years would present extreme headwinds within the world economy, and Nigeria (Akwa Ibom) would not be immune from it. We are already living in harsh economic times. And I cannot imagine what the harsher times that are being predicted by the World bank and other international experts would feel like.
‘’There are pensioners to pay, promotion arrears to clear, debt to service, other obligations to meet. No gainsying that we need a governor in the mould of Umoh Eno to cut the waste and rechannel the resources where they matter.’’
This article was originally published on Nigeria News