Asuquo ‘Suki’ Ekpenyong Jnr.

By Azogor Ideba

 At 29, Asuquo Ekpenyong Jr. (Suki) was nominated as Commissioner for Finance by His Excellency, Senator Benedict Ayade, Governor of Cross River State. He became renowned for being the youngest commissioner in the country.

It is perhaps, no longer news that on May 28th, 2022, Asuquo Ekpenyong Jr. emerged the All-Progressives Congress, APC, Cross River South senatorial candidate for the 2023 general election after pulling a stunning total of 347 votes out of 351 votes cast in the primary election.

What is rather fascinating is the making and remaking of history, best described as ‘history in pursuit of serendipity’.

Apparently, at 36, Asuquo Ekpenyong Jr. today is the youngest senatorial candidate of a political party in Africa. Besides American Jon Ossolf who became a senator at 35 and Barbados Khaleel Kothdiwala who was appointed a Senator at 18, Suki at 37 next year, would be the youngest 21st century senator in Africa and one of the youngest in the world, when he finally wins the Cross River South senatorial seat in 2023.

With a dossier of quality, credibility and goodwill, becoming a senator at the age of 37 is a feat many political pundits believe Suki would tactfully achieve, thus, remaking history.

All over the world, the parameters are beginning to change. There are young people today, who if given opportunities will handle issues realistically and would provide effective leadership. On the other hand, there are adults, who can’t be entrusted with responsibility however small.

The largely warped notion that wisdom, decency and other good virtues reside only with the old is not only deceptive but also archaic. In fact, wisdom resides in the brain and not in the beards. Opportunity has been the clog in the wheels of manifestation. Thus, underpinning the popular saying: “ability is nothing without opportunity”.  

Today, we have reached the twilight of youth relegation and stigmatic rejection in politics, governance and national development.

Asuquo Ekpenyong (Suki) hails from Odukpani local government area in Cross River. In addition to his portfolio as Commissioner for Finance, he was concurrently saddled with the additional responsibility of serving as the Managing Director of Nigeria’s Premier Tinapa Business and Leisure Resort from February 2016 to April 2017. Between 2018 and 2019, he also doubled as Commissioner for Transport & Marine Services, superintending over two sensitive ministries at the time.

His performance as Commissioner for finance was phenomenal. Even with the distressed condition of the state’s revenue, his shrewd administrative know-how and adept understanding of the system and its challenges had greatly contributed to bringing financial stability to the state through several models of innovative thinking.

From every indication, Suki has proven his mettle. He has been able to distinguish himself in work, service and character; epitomizing integrity, tenacity, sagacity and capacity. Indeed, he has built for himself a pedigree that attracts admiration from friends and associates; a character that offers inspiration and hope both to the old and young generations; an embodiment of the genuine wishes and aspirations of the people.

Millions, even beyond Cross River, argue that young and cerebral, with a rich and vast network of local and international contacts, and institutional alliances, Suki is best suited for the senatorial seat of Cross River South in 2023. With such assets, at his disposal, the south would surely enjoy quality representation and ‘dividends of democracy’.

Suki has an incredibly stable emotion; not agitated by class or affluence but imbued with the milk of kindness which makes humanity the centre of his strives and efforts. His compassion for the people is unparalleled. Same would be his proclivity at the Senate; the best that would happen to the people of Cross River southern senatorial district in 2023, when elected.  

Harvard trained, with a string of degrees in Economics, Banking & Finance, Business Administration, Oil & Gas amongst others, he is well-read, smart, savvy and vibrant.

Our quality of life depends on the quality of our leaders. Suki is competent, equipped and ready to serve. He is the man next door and an all-in-one recipe for effective representation.

Let’s remake history together.

Ideba wrote in from Calabar

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.