Akwa Ibom guber poll: Etiebet canvasses open contest
A TUEKONG Don Etiebet, member of the BOT of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has called for an open primary for the selection of the party’s flag bearer for the 2015 gubernatorial election in Akwa Ibom State. Delivering a lecture, entitled “Democracy and the challenge of leadership”, at the 55th birthday celebration of Umana Okon Umana, Akwa Ibom PDP leading governorship candidate, Etiebet advised qualified and interested politicians in the 2015 governorship race from all parts of the state to feel free and contest for the party’s ticket. He recalled that after the initial consensus agreement that produced the first flag bearer of the party in 1999, primary contests in Akwa Ibom PDP have always been open, and called on aspirants to ignore the threat that those who are not supported by the state governor will die because they are “seeking power through the backdoor”. He encouraged all aspirants to go to the “people who are the real front door” for the mandate to run for office. “Go to the people who are the front door and nobody will die, and if anybody dies, we will find the killer,” Etiebet said. Etiebet, a founding member of the PDP in the state, vowed to work with the national leadership of the party to provide a level playing for all aspirants at the party primary coming up in two months’ time in the state. Also speaking at the event, Obong Bassey Albert, immediate past Commissioner for Finance in the state and a PDP governorship aspirant, pledged to work with Umana for the good of democracy in the state. Recalling that it was the bloc votes from Uyo Senatorial District (USD) that helped Ikot Ekpene Senatorial District (ISD) to produce the current administration in the state, Bassey said it was only fair that other senatorial districts should support Uyo to produce the next governor of the state.