Why APC, YPP and others are Supporting Umo Eno


The Evangelist edition, August, 21, 2022. By Emmanuel Uffot

Ahead of the September kick- off of election campaign, and inspite of the pockets of opposition to the candidacy of Pastor Umo especially the ongoing court case instituted by Akan Okon on the authenticity of the WAEC Certificate of the PDP candidates emerging political scenario playing out points to the fact that the former Commissioner for Lands and water Resources is still the beautiful bride and the man to beat in the coming 2023 election to determine who goes into the Hilltop mansion to take over from Governor Udom Emmanuel.
Again not withstanding the emerging build up of opposition parties like the APC, YPP now lured by Senator Bassey Albert and his followers, NNPP which has maverick politician and perennial governorship contesting Senator James John Akpan Udoedeghe and another perennial governorship contesting Architect Ezekiel Nya Etok, findings within the fold of these parties indicate that mist members of the parties are there in flesh but their spirit are with Pastor Umo Eno.
These facts have been given credence by the wave of defection of key members of opposition parties in the state to the PDP in recent times.
One of such major swift of camp, was a one time influential member of the PDP in the state, Bishop Sam Akpan. Akpan who was International Coordinator of Akwa Ibom Peoples Forum, AKPF, a platform that paddle the second term drive of then Governor Godswill Akpabio had decamped to APC where he became one of the chieftains of the party in the state.
But last July, Bishop Akpan decided to jettison APC and return back to PDP with thousands of supporters that included Dr Edet Ati, former Commissioner Dr Bassey Antai and a grass root political mobiliser, Imeh Gamble.
Before that, great numbers of members of opposition parties had used the window of opportunity provided by the party at the state wide ward meetings to decamped to the ruling party in their wards.
Political analysts believed these droves of movement to PDP from the opposition parties revolves around the bright chance of Pastor Umo Eno in the coming polls.
However, emerging reasons have pointed to why members of the opposition parties are routing for Umo Eno.
One of the key reasons is the gloomy chance of the candidates of other parties and the issues within their party which might inhibit their chance.
For APC, there is a strong indication that the party will not have a governorship candidate if the position of INEC on the issue is anything to go by. The prolong infighting in the party which led to the party going into factions has dawn on members that continuing to put all their eggs in a party that is swimming in crisis will be counter productive, hence sources revealed to The Evangelist is that most of them have chosen to lay their support on the side of the PDP candidate who they believe has a better chance.
In the case of YPP which Senator Albert has emerged as their flag bearer, even as he is seen to lead some followers, but some members of the party still think he won’t reach that promise land and may not even site it at close distance going by the baggage hungover on his neck.
Apart from his case with EFCC in the N204 million car purchase scandal which is ongoing and not tilting in his favour a member of the party who was an aspirant has gone to court to challenge the process that led to Senator Albert becoming the flag bearer.
The plaintiff frowned at the way the chairman of the party Nyenemi Andy had pretended to be the candidate only to hand it over to Albert.

He wants the court to determine whether that process was constitutional.
Again, pundits see the provisions of the new electoral act on the legality of a candidate. Section 77 (3) of the 2022 Electoral Act specifies that every political party must give a copy of its membership register to INEC at least 30 days before the date of a primary election.

The implication of this is that if someone was not a member of a political party for atleast 30 days before the primary election, he is not qualified to stand as candidate in the election because the record of members of that party with INEC does not contain such a member and INEC cannot honour any membership register that is sent after 30 days before the primary election.

So this is a hurdle confronting OBA as he is fondly called which has caused many members who feel he has no chance, to go for Umo Eno.
In the case of NNPP which Udoedeghe us flying their flag as governorship candidate.

He has a very bad political image which even his supporters could vow he can’t win the coming election. For them the conclusion is that the PDP candidate baring the outcome of the certificate case will win the election.
Another reason why some members of the opposition are supporting the PDP candidate is his disposition as a peaceful man compared to other candidates.
They believe if he becomes the governor being a Pastor the state will still continue to enjoy the prevailing peace.
Another reason why members of other parties are Supporting Umo Eno has to do with the structures of the PDP which others don’t have. Specifically the Maintain Peace Movement which is the political platform of Umo Eno which has tap root in all the nooks and crannies of the state has made him the beautiful bride and one of the reason he is gaining support from the opposition which has manifested in the rain of defections from other parties to PDP.
Again the fact that Umo Eno has been annointed by the governor and former governor Obong Victor Attah has made him the waiting governor going by precedence.
For the PDP party who is now involved in receipt of decampees, he says it is a good omen given the fact that the state has always been PDP and anyone that believes that a politician will move to any party without any structure and win is living in fools paradise.

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