Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, has dissociated himself from the alleged violence in the Akwa Ibom rerun election in Essien Udim Local Government Area.
A statement by Akpabio’s Chief Press Secretary, Anietie Ekong, on Saturday, said the decision of the minister and that of his party, the All Progressives Congress, to withdraw from the election was sacrosanct.
He claimed that there was an alleged plot by the PDP to use its thugs to cause mayhem and link it to Akpabio.
“We have however gathered that PDP sponsored thugs were planning to carry out a sinister plot during the rerun elections and link it to Senator Akpabio.
“Security agencies should be on the watch out for miscreants and sponsored thugs, apprehend them and visit the full weight of the law on them,” the statement added.
It said the news linking the minister to the violence was fake and urged the public to disregard it.
The statement read in part, “The news linking Senator Godswill Akpabio to any rerun election in Essien Udim Local Government Area is fake.
“It is well known that because of higher national responsibilities as a Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Akpabio had withdrawn his candidature from the said election. He was replaced by the APC with Obongemem Ekperikpe Ekpo.
“The other candidates, who were scheduled for the elections, Nse Ntuen and Emmanuel Akpan have written to announce their withdrawal from the elections.
“And just yesterday (Friday), the State Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Ini Okopido at a widely publicised press conference announced that the APC will not participate in the rerun elections.
“So, on what basis would any sane human being link Senator Akpabio to whatever is happening in Essien Udim Local Government Area?
“As I write Senator Akpabio is not even in Essien Udim. He’s in Uyo. He has no interest whatsoever in what is going on there and has advised his supporters to heed the call of the state APC and boycott the elections.”