- The Akwa Ibom APC has declined declaring Senator Godswill Akpabio as the leader of the party in the state
- The party also resolved that the state's caucus chairman Atuekong Don-Etiebet will continue as Akwa Ibom APC leader
- The decision followed resistance by stakeholders in the party after the defection of the former minority leaders from PDP
The All Progressives Congress in Akwa Ibom state has resolved that the state's caucus chairman of the party Atuekong Don-Etiebet would continue as the leader of APC in the state.
The decision of the Akwa Ibom state chapter followed a meeting by stakeholders of the party over plans to make the former Senate minority leader, Godswill Akpabio, the leader of the APC in the state.
It was gathered that in its meeting which held on Friday, August 24, Don-Etiebet, a former minister of petroleum and national chairman of the defunct ANPP, was given the mandate to continue as the leader of the party in the state.
Sources privy to the meeting said the decision to allow Don-Etiebet continue as leader of the party was sealed after the meeting on Saturday, August 25, which was attended by Senator John Udoedehe, Sam Enwang, Obong Nsima Ekere, Umana Umana and Obong Rita Akpan.
Although Akpabio had promised to abide by the decision of the stakeholders upholding the status of Don-Etiebiet as leader of the party and chairman of caucus after his plea to be made an alternate chairman of caucus was roundly resisted by stakeholders.
Following the resistance, Enwang had argued that it was contrary to the APC's constitution.
Also, the decision by the stakeholders to retain Don-Etiebet as leader of the party over Senator Akpabio was part of a six-point resolution adopted at the meeting.
Other resolutions adopted during the meeting included that: "A vote of confidence is passed on President Muhammadu Buhari, the chairman of caucus and leader of the party Atuekong Don-Etiebiet as well as the chairman of the party Mr. Ini Okopido.
"That senator Godswill Akpabio is welcomed to the party; and that there is no zoning, hence there will be no automatic ticket or right of first refusal for members of the party who are currently holding elective positions."
Sources said some members of the caucus had threatened to leave the APC if Akpabio had insisted on leading the party in the state because they were yet to know the former minority leader's purpose for joining the party.
A source said the resolution by the APC stakeholders in the state was a saving grace intended to forestall more defections from the party.
Meanwhile, NAIJ.com previously reported that members of the APC in Akwa Ibom had kicked against the speculated defection of the minority leader of the Senate, Godswill Akpabio.
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The party members under the aegis of Akwa Ibom Progressives Watch petitioned the national chairman of the APC, Adams Oshiomhole, warning on the impending dangers of defection of Akpabio, a former governor of Akwa Ibom state to the APC.
The group said it had noted with deep concern the broad chorus of disapproval and complete despondency among different strata of members of the APC in Akwa Ibom state over the defection of Akpabio to the party.
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