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  • “Help PDP Win Elections”, Akwa Ibom Governor Tells Youth Corps Members
  • The Akwa Ibom State governor, Udom Emmanuel, has urged
    members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) on election
    duty to help the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) win the
    forthcoming general elections in the state.
    The presidential election, including national assembly elections,
    holds on February 16, while the governorship and state house of
    assembly is on March 2.
    The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), as it has
    become the practice, would be using NYSC members as ad hoc
    officials for the conduct of the elections.
    Mr Emmanuel made the shocking appeal on Saturday at a political
    rally in Obot Akara Local Government Area of the state.
    The governor after acknowledging the presence of his wife, Martha,
    and other dignitaries at the rally, went on to ask if there were NYSC
    members at the rally.
    “Yes!” some voices responded from the crowd.
    “You are the ones that will do elections!” Mr Emmanuel said from
    the stage where he stood to address the rally.
    “You know how you do it!
    “When you are doing it, remember PDP!
    “When you are doing it, remember PDP-o!” the governor said.
    “Gowon is a member of PDP, in case you don’t know,” the governor
    continued, after asking the crowd if they knew who started the
    NYSC programme in the country.
    The NYSC is a scheme for Nigerian youth in place of mandatory
    military conscription which is non-existent in the country.
    The programme was initiated in 1973 during the military
    administration of Yakubu Gowon.
    Mr Gowon, 83, is not known to be currently involved in partisan
    politics.
    At the Obot Akara rally, Mr Emmanuel expressed hope that the PDP
    candidate for Akwa Ibom North-West District election, Chris
    Ekpenyong, would defeat the incumbent senator, Godswill Akpabio.
    Mr Akpabio, a former governor of the state, is seeking re-election as
    a senator under the All Progressives Congress (APC).
    The senator had defected from the PDP to the APC in August last
    year, igniting a political storm in Akwa Ibom and across Nigeria.
    “I can sign my signature on him, he will not betray you people, and
    he will not betray PDP” Governor Emmanuel said at the rally while
    soliciting votes for the PDP candidate, Mr Ekpenyong. “Nobody
    loves Obot Akara and Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District like Chris
    Ekpenyong.”
    The governor urged the people of Obot Akara to give Mr Ekpenyong
    100 per cent votes in the election.
    He said it would make a perfect combination for Mr Ekpenyong to
    be at Abuja, while he, as governor, controls the state.
    “I have checked records, this is the first time Obot Akara is going to
    produce a senator,” he added.
    The governor, who said his administration has built roads and
    bridges in Obot Akara, promised to do more for the area if he is
    elected for a second term.
    In his remarks at the rally, Mr Ekpenyong told Governor Emmanuel,
    “We have finished campaigns, we have finished the election. We are
    only waiting for the D-day.
    “We know how to do elections,” he assured Mr Emmanuel. “When
    we finish in Obot Akara we will move on to another part of the state
    to give support to those who don’t know how to vote.”
    The governor smiled.
    Mr Ekpenyong warned those who have “federal might” not to dare
    step foot on Obot Akara and the entire state on the Election Day.
    “We will surely extend our boundary from Obot Akara to all parts of
    Akwa Ibom,” he said.

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