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Okon Eket People Raise Alarm over plan to Scuttle Political Zoning

is not true, I don’t have thug, I want to re-contest due to exigencies – Hon. David Lawrence Udofa

By Josephine Ekpa

The people of Okon in Eket local government area under the aegis, Ekid People Political Front (EPPF) have raised an alarm over the plan by the present House of Assembly member representing Eket State Constituency in the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Hon. David Lawrence Udofa to scuttle the existing political equation in the area.

Their position, which was contained in a press release and made available to Century Newsfront and signed by its president, Chief Sunny Ekop and Secretary, Dr. Sylvester Umoh complained that the planned third term bid by Hon. David Udofa is an attempt to destroy the long existing political equation in the local government thereby, jeopardizing the chances of Okon zone to produce the next House of Assembly member in 2019.

The people observed that for equity and fairness, the local government zoned all the key political offices to different zones and these arrangements have been strictly followed since 1999 and expressed shock that Hon. David Udofa, a beneficiary of this zoning principle has decided to wage a war against the very system that brought him to the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly and threatens those that oppose his second term bid with thugs.

According to the statement, Hon. David Udofa’s mendacity, profligacy and urge for humongous wealth was an attempt to bring anarchy into the political system of the area and reduce Okon people, the right people to occupy House of Assembly seat in 2019 to penury.

They stated that Eket local government area is divided into three political zones viz: Okon, Central and Urban, while the political offices of interest include: local government Chairmanship, House of Assembly seat and Party Chairmanship. The offices under consideration are Council Secretaryship, Leadership of the Legislature and Council Vice Chairmanship. These offices have been allocated to different zones from 1999 till date without rancour until recent ugly development created by Hon. David Udofa.

The people pointed out that in the case of the House of Assembly position, Okon Zone took the first turn in 1999-2003, then the Central Zone took their turn from 2003-2011 and Urban Zone took in 2011 to terminate in 2019 and wondered why Hon. David Udofa would want to truncate the existing arrangement to continue beyond 2019.

They maintained that the current House member from the area pursuing third term agenda will negate the principle of zoning and also amount to deprivation of Okon Zone of their rightful turn and would go as far as scattering the already well established zoning of political offices observing that after the Central Zone, that is occupying the position of Chairmanship of Council, Urban Zone naturally would take over, which should as well be applied in the House of Assembly.

When contacted by Century Newsfront, Hon. David Lawrence Udofa denied the allegation of threatening political opponents with thugs, said that he does not have any thug let alone sending against anybody, “I don’t have thug, I don’t even understand what they are referring to”.

On the issue of zoning, Hon. Udofa explained that the three zones have equally participated and that the issue of zoning, there is need for amendment to give additional four years of one term for him to complete his ongoing projects, “all the zones have participated effectively. The issue here is that there are some exigencies. The exigency here is that I have some projects, which I initiated and I need to complete them. The reality this time around is that, we will go for one term each and this issue of zoning is subject to amendment based on the reality of the time. The people of Eket want me to go back, even the Okon people also endorsed me. They are saying that I should go back and complete the Super-Highway, market and other people-oriented projects that I am currently working on”.

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