By Tony Nyong
The purported suspension of former GovernorÂ Victor Attah by Akwa Ibom state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party [PDP] on allegations of being reactionary and refractory has been condemned by some high profile politicians of Ibibio origin who have also threatened to leave the partyÂ should the situation, which they fear couldÂ degenerate into an ethnic war, continue.
The stateâ€™s PDP Chairman and Secretary, Uwem Ita Etuk and Ibanga Akpabio, had in a May 28, 2009, letter to PDP national Chairman in Abuja, titled: â€œRe: Suspension of Arc. Obong Victor Bassey Attah from the Party,â€ alleged that Attah was booted out of the party from his ward, Asutan 1, based on the recommendations of a committee report of the party at the ward and chapter as ratified by the state executive.
Their grievances, the letter stated, include refusal to attend ward, local government and national convention, making utterances capable of smearing the party and the governor, Chief Godswill Akpabio and fraternizing with opposition party chieftains in the state, amongst others.
The state PDP chairman, while explaining other reasons behind the expulsion, said Obong Attah was not bigger than the party, noting that one of the grounds for the action was that Attah sponsored a legal action against the present executives who were said to have paraded themselves as illegal party men in the state.
Above all he maintained that Obong Attah had no electoral value, as the decision of the party was final.
Meanwhile, the raging ethnic war in the state is described as an ill wind that would blow no one any good.
Former Minister of State, Federal Capital Territory [FCT], Senator John Akpan- Udoedehe, has towed Obong Attahâ€™s position, advising Chief Akpabio not to regard the letter as a wrong advice and hide under the guise to launch assault on the Ibibio elders.
â€œNo Ibibio man should use Ibibio name to sustain perpetual hunger because of ill or wrong planning of his life by becoming a sycophant to the present government in the state.
â€œI am against that. Iâ€™m in support of that Attahâ€™s advice and I want the Ibibios to refrain from being used to divide the Ibibio nation.Â We should reason and look at the emerging political trend and try to defend it,â€ he said .
Esop Ima Isong Ibibio, an apex socio cultural body in Ibibio land, over the weekend, came to admonish the two elder statesmen to discontinue acting in a manner that is capable of portraying the state in bad light to the international community.
Essien Udim local government stakeholders forum had earlierÂ in an advertorial strongly condemnedÂ Obong Attahâ€™s administration as a flop in the execution of people-oriented projects in the state.
The group in their advertorial, ridiculed the former governor, saying among other things that, if he designed the Uyo master plan , he could have as well developed it before the end of his tenure.
But a prominent Ibibio chieftain, and former Special Assistant to Obong Attah who pleadedÂ anonymity, describedÂ the PDP action in the state as executive joblessness, observingÂ that the party was merely starting a mess it would not be able to finish.
He noted that â€œwhoever is scripting this thing for Chief Godswill Akpabio to act on would always live to regret at the end because Obong Attahâ€™s letter to the governor was an advice.
According to him, the Bible has warned that whoever does not like advice is like a fool saying and that it was left for either the governor to heed the advice or leave it for the state to continue.
â€œThis sycophancy in Akwa Ibom is getting to a stage where somebody would kill his brother, mother or relative for something of the future they donâ€™t even know whether they would leave to see tomorrow because God controls everything.
â€œSome of those bigwigs who dabbled into the issue are as a result of executive joblessness. They have nothing to do and the issue is already distracting the governor and the governor should not listen or dissipate his energy to listen to such people,â€ said the Ibibio chieftain.
He warned that if governor Akpabio had instigated the suspension of Obong Attah, it would be too bad since in the end, the issue that is progressing together as a people would perish together as an individual.
The alleged suspension of Obong Attah, which came as a surprise to the people of the state was said to have been informed by the recent open letter he wrote to the incumbent Governor Akpabio, advising on the way forward on the development and over all implementation ofÂ Uyo Capital city master-plan.