The Member representing Ikono state constituency in the Akwa Ibom state House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Victor Udofia, has dismissed as false and mischievous reports claiming that he has absent from the legislative business of the sixth Assembly for six months running.
The state lawmaker, who was reacting on telephone to Radar Newspapers’ enquiry on the issue, stated that those behind the reports are known blackmailers from his constituency, who want to distract him from his legislative duties.
He explained that the House of Assembly has been on a two months recess, asking rhetorically, if the recess was his making and if the two months were part of the six months he is said to have been absent from sitting?
He urged that such reports should be discarded because it was untrue, referring Radar newspapers to the record of proceedings of the state assembly, if the report was anything to go by; asking that if the report was true, then why has the leadership of the House of Assembly not issued him a query to that effect?
On the claims that he had been walked out occasionally by the Speakers of the Assembly for either dressing “shabbily or talking rudely” during the plenary session of the state parliament; Mr. Victor Udofia dismissed as false, saying that at no time, any of the Speakers of the House of Assembly right from the time of Mr Anietie Etuk, Mr Sam Ikon, Mr Aniekan Uko to Mr Onofiok Luke, had he been walked out of the plenary. He said that the House Standing Rules provide for Dress Code and he had never defaulted.
He took time to enumerate his achievements to his constituency as a lawmaker, stating that he does not believe in making a media show of his achievements and empowerment programmes for his Ikono people.
He said he has attracted the construction of a 7km road in his constituency as a lawmaker among other projects. He went further to challenge any political officeholder from Ikono local government whether, past or present to a debate on his achievements for the people of Ikono, saying that no public office holder appointed or elected from Ikono, past or present has ever done what he (Victor Udofia) has done in Ikono.
On the political leadership tussle between Sir S.U. Akpan and Obong Emmanuel UkpongUdo; the state parliamentarian, said that there was anything like tussle, so long as he, as the elected state representative of Ikono and the state governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel, have recognised Mr S.U. Akpan as the political leader of Ikono, adding that that does not stop any indigene of Ikono from going about parading himself as a political leader.
He observed that anybody has the right to call himself whatever position he/she wants including as a political leader, noting that it does not imply that such a person has control over him (Udofia) and the people of Ikono.
He asserted that during the 2015 governorship elections, Mr Udom Emmanuel who was the PDP governorship candidate in the state, went round the 31 LGAs and consulted the political leaders of the 31 LGAs, saying that in Ikono, Mr Udom Emmanuel consulted Sir S.U. Akpan as the political leader of Ikono and himself (Victor Udofia) as Ikono state lawmaker; and later went to Ini to consult Otuekong Otu Robert Akpan as the political leader of Ini LGA.
He advised blackmailers in Ikono not to drag the name of Mr Victor Etefia (his opponent in the 2015 state House of Assembly elections) into their cooked up falsehood, saying that Mr Etefia is his cousin and had since moved on after the party primaries that took place in MoPol Barack, Ukana, Essien Udim.
He said that the primaries was peacefully conducted, adding that before voting commenced, two aspirants stepped down for him at the venue, while Mr Victor Etefia lifted up his hands after the result of the poll was in his (Udofia’s) favour.
He maintained that he has good working relationship with his cousin (Etefia), whom, he said they meet often time to interact.
Mr Udofia asserted that his empowerment to Ikono people has no limit or political leaning, saying that he does not empower his constituents based on who they voted for in the 2015 elections.
He explained a scenario where a man is not his supporter and the man’s two sons are his supporters, adding that in such a case, if he were to be selective, how would he have empowered such a man? Noting that on the contrary, both the man and his two sons are enjoying his empowerment programmes.