By Simon Peters Abuh
Mbuotidem Affia presently serves as special assistant, projects, to Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State and is also state chairman, League of Akwa Ibom Professionals. He speaks in this interview on his work and his aspiration to serve in the State House of Assembly. Excerpts:
What have been your achievements since your appointment?
In my immediate constituency, I have sponsored the Governor Udom Emmanuel Unity Cup competition, a town hall meeting with the youths, elders and women groups to inform them on some of the activities of the administration and the need to maintain peace which is the bedrock of any development.
We have also given material aid and cash to help alleviate the condition of our people.
Beyond your present job as aide to the governor, do you have other political aspirations?
Yes I do. I am aspiring to represent the good people of Etim Ekpo/Ika Local Government Area in the State House of Assembly.
Akwa Ibom people are very comfortable with PDP, we believe in zoning, zoning is the way forward for equality and fair play, and we are used to zoning. In Etim Ekpo, my Local Government Area, the present lawmaker representing us is of Ika Local Government extraction, this is his second term in office, after which an Etim Ekpo man is eligible to represent the state constituency.
This has been the practice in the law-making representation in both federal and state assemblies since the creation of Akwa Ibom State over 30 years now.
Nobody from Kono clan has ever been nominated or elected to represent us at federal or state level. What is our offence that we should be marginalised to this extent? We are not minority. We call on our leaders of thought, stakeholders and political leaders to balance this political equation. I am not challenging our leader but only serving as the voice crying in the wilderness that the crooked way and the lopsided zoning system in my local government be straightened. I speak for all going by the ideology of the leader of Akwa Ibom people, the Executive Governor, His Excellency, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, on zoning to any area that has been neglected.
Why do you think you are the right/best candidate for your constituency?
I am a new paradigm politician, full of ideas; I don’t deceive and will never deceive. I am exposed, I am educated, I am a communicator I will speak for my people, sponsor bills and make laws that will inspire the people and the government for effective productivity, growth and development. I stand to protect the interest of the people within my capacity at all time, I am in my 40s, a bridge builder between the youth and the elders, I am humble, my loyalty has never been in doubt throughout my working life.
If you are elected, what should your constituency expect from you? Loyalty to the people, host constituency or town hall meetings frequently, bring feedback to my people, accessibility, make laws that will guarantee safety of lives and property of the people, make laws and initiatives to attract investment and development to the constituency. Ensure equitable distribution of resources in the constituency.
What are the prevailing challenges within your constituency that require urgent attention?
Giving us the opportunity to represent the constituency as other clans did in law-making Assembly. The governor/leader of Akwa Ibom people is on top of every challenge within my constituency. We are happy with him for giving us Akwa Ibom of our dream.