Governor Udom Emmanuel has forwarded a list of seven nominees to Akwa Ibom State House for confirmation and appointment into the board of the Akwa Ibom State Independent Electoral Commission, AKISIEC, as Chairman and members.
The nominees are to replace the Gloria Ukpong led the board of the Electoral Commission following an executive request on the legislature for the approval of the dissolution of the board of the Commission.
In a message addressed to the Speaker and members of the House, and read by the Clerk, Governor Udom Emmanuel traced the inability of the Gloria Ukpong led AKISIEC Commission to perform its function to an intractable rancour existing between the Chairman and members of the commission. He urged the lawmakers to approve the dissolution of the board of the state electoral body.
Parts of the message reads “I wish to bring to the notice of Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly that AKISIEC has been unable to perform its function because of rancour between the Chairman and members of the Commission”.
The nominees include Mr Ikoiwak Aniedi Bassey, as Chairman, while Mr Patrick Ifon, Matthew Udoh, Usoro Asuquo Ukpanah, Sunday Edet Enefiok, Dr Mrs Faith Umoh and Elder. Eyaekop Effiong Umanah were nominated as members of the Commission.
“”I wish to bring to the notice of Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly that AKISIEC has been unable to perform its function because of rancour between the Chairman and members of the Commission”
In another message read by the Clerk, the Governor citing section 2 subsection 1 of AKISIEC law 2007, requested the House of Assembly to confirm the new Chairman and six other members for appointment into the electoral board.
Leading debate on the matter, the House Leader, Sir. Udo Kierian Akpan, who argued that the governor’s request was in conformity with the relevant law establishing the electoral body, noted “The condition for removal of Chairman and members of the Commission is clearly stated in the AKISIEC law. The letter of the Governor has stated ‘intractable rancour as one of the reasons, and with the local government election fixed for November 11 and a commission that is not united cannot be able to conduct election successfully”.
Chairman, House Committee on Appropriation and Finance, Hon. Usoro Akpanusoh, who represents Esit-Eket/Ibeno state constituency, expressed fears that if the person’s in questions were not relieved of their position, their continuous stay in office coupled with the reported rancour said to be existing amongst were capable of sabotaging the forthcoming local government election. He described the governor’s action as going in tandem with the law establishing AKISIEC. His colleague from Nsit Atai State
constituency, Hon. Mark Esset in his submission posited that a house divided against itself cannot stand. The member representing Ukanafun state constituency, Hon. Otobong Jonathan Akpan said “Having listened to the message of the governor as read by the Clerk, am compelled to believe that the governor is in order. We are approaching local government elections and the world is watching Akwa Ibom State”.
The member representing Ibesikpo Asutan State constituency, Hon. Aniekan Uko said “I want to commend His Excellency, the Governor for his dexterity in running government business. During the recent meeting the governor held between the AKISIEC Chairman and members, it was glaring as was seen by everyone in attendance that there was rancour. Other political parties had kicked against the continuous stay of the (Gloria Ukpong led) AKISIEC board in office”.
Reacting, Speaker, Rt. Hon. Barr. Onofiok Luke, directed the Clerk communicate the resolution of the House to the Governor and other relevant authorities.