Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Akpabio shuts down mechanic village, Akpan-Andem market for Udom

Akpabio shuts down mechanic village, Akpan-Andem market for Udom


Governor Godswill Akpabio, our re porters learnt has taken his impunity to another level as he has moved to close down activities in Urua Akpan Andem and Mechanic Village, to ensure that everybody attends the kick-off rally of the Akwa Ibom State governorship standard bearer of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Udom Emmanuel on Friday (tomorrow). The State Governor Chief Godswill Akpabio is said to have given strict orders that anyone caught flouting the order will be seriously dealt with.

Investigation by our reporters revealed that the move is an attempt to measure up to the massive crowd that the APC Governorship candidate, Obong Umana Okon Umana pulled last Tuesday in Abak. It could be recalled that last Tuesday, Obong Umana Umana completely halted all activities in Abak Five when he went to the area for his campaign rally and kick off. The crowd that welcomed Umana Umana in Abak was intimidating and had reportedly struck fear into the camp of the PDP and that of Akpabio.
To this end, the Governor is said to have instructed that users of mechanic village and Akpanandem market be forced to all go out to the Akwa Ibom International stadium and cheer up Udom 

This development, a source hinted THE INK that shop owners will be forcefully conveyed in buses to attend the rally at the Ibom International Stadium in other to tell the people that Udom Emmanuel is popular  and is loved by all a and sundry to pull such a thick crowd of people. 

THE INK also gathered from a very reliable source that those who will refuse to comply with the directive of Governor Akpabio, stand the risk of losing their shops which they will have themselves to blame at the end of the day.

Chatting with our reporter on Wednesday night, one of the shop owners in Akpan-Andem Market (names withheld), said he was surprised when he got wind of the news that such a plan was being cooked by the state governor. He expressed dismay over the development, noting that it is the height of impunity and total lack of disrespect to the good people of Akwa Ibom state. His words: “so, the governor wants to tell the whole world the kind of person he is? It is bad and wicked that he could be so uncaring as to plan to sacrifice people’s means of livelihood just for Udom. God will pay him back.” 

He lamented. The development, our paper gathered, has threw shop owners into a state of panic and uncertainty as they were seen in clusters lamenting what they stand to lose on Friday if the news is carried out to the letter. As they made efforts to speak in hushed tones, our reporters’ eavesdropped on them as they rained unprintable abuses on the state governor and Udom Emmanuel over what most of them asked in utter wonderment “what is our business with their wicked politics; will they give us food to feed our family?” They queried. THE INK learnt further that some market women are already devising ways of transferring their wares from the market to another space they will sell on Friday and not give a hoot to whatever the governor and his lickspittles are planning. Concerned citizens who bared their mind on the issue condemned in totality the decision to close the market just for a rally that won’t place food on their table or contribute anything meaningful to their life. 

They noted that the decision smacks of desperation by the governor adding that it’s an attempt to sell a dummy to Mr. President and indeed Nigerians that Mr. Udom Emmanuerl is loved by the people of Akwa Ibom state when that is the stark opposite of the true situation. Another respondent who pleaded for anonymity said that what the governor is planning to do is unconnected to widely held opinion that he is out to inflict pain on the people, especially those of Ibibio stock and those that are against his choice of Udom Emmanuel as his successor. 

He continued that though he (Akpabio) has succeeded in imposing Udom on the people, it is wrong for him to distract or stop them from doing their legitimate business. He concluded that even if Akpabio shuts down the market, he will either take his wares to another market or stay put in his house. Others who spoke separately with our reporters also condemned the development, noting that it is uncivil and undemocratic to close the market; especially the mechanic village that is dominated by the     Igbos. 

They added that the idea to close the Mechanic Village is unconnected to attempts to drive home the point that the Igbo community in the state are fully in support of the candidacy of Udom Emmanuel. Majority of the respondents expressed worry over the fate that will likely befall them tomorrow and pleaded that the idea be shelved especially as it is too early in the year to close their shops for any reason, more so, a political rally.   

Efforts to get in touch with the commissioner of Information Mr. Aniekan Umana to comment on the development were unsuccessful as calls to his phone were not picked.             

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