Chief Assam Assam, a former Nigerian Ambassador to Russia and Belarus has condemned the recent attack on the Akwa Ibom State Commissioner for Works, Mr. Ephraim Inyang-Eyen, by a former Minister of Lands and Housing Development, Chief Nduese Essien.
Chief Essien who is the Leader of Eket Senatorial District Elders’ Forum had earlier in the week attacked the works commissioner in an interview, wherein the commissioner was reportedly misquoted to have said that Eket remodeling project was stalled because property owners affected by the project had preferred to institute court cases against the government, than negotiate for compensation.
Reacting to the statement made against Inyang-Eyen by the former minister, Chief Assam said Chief Essien’s reaction was hasty, uncalled for, and did not represent the views of Eket Senatorial District Elders’ Forum.
The former ambassador also said Chief Essien’s reaction against the Commissioner based on reports on social media was unjustifiable and should be discarded by the people of Eket senatorial district.
“Before we think that anybody is insulting us, we must be satisfied that he (Inyang-Eyen) actually said those things credited to him.”
“The works commissioner is an appointee of the governor and we have direct access to the governor. We can afford to confront the governor with what the commissioner has said and the commissioner can then go before the governor and explain himself, if he said it or he was wrongly quoted. There should be an enquiry before we as a people react”.
“The chairman, Eket Senatorial District Elders’ Forum, Chief Nduese Essien, was not speaking for the Eket people. If an alleged statement was made on the 5th of May, he should have consulted the Eket people which he is yet to do, before coming to the media. If we have issues with the Government, we will go and discuss with the governor rather than play around with issues media.”
Assam said Ephraim Inyang was one of the best known commissioners in the state because his ministry works closely with the people, thus the vituperation from the public against him was expected.
“The best known commissioner in this State is Ephraim Inyang, because he is the person who has to affect the lives of the people. So, he also has to draw a lot of flaks and that is understandable.”
Assam appealed for calm from the former minister and encouraged the commissioner to remain focused on the huge responsibilities of giving the State good infrastructure as contained in the blueprint of his boss, Governor Udom Emmanuel.