NASS leadership: APC South South women back Akpabio for Senate Presidency
The women professionals of the All Progressives Congress (APC) from the South South geo-political zone have thrown their weights behind the candidature of Senator Godswill Akpabio for the position of the President of the Senate.
Akpabio, a former Minister of the Niger Delta and governor of oil rich Akwa Ibom state is one of those contesting for the position of Senate President.
Others who have indicated interest also for the highest federal legislative position are: former governor of Abia State and 9th Assembly Senate Chief Whip, Senator Orji Uzor Kalu, former Zamfara State governor, Alhaji Abdullazizi Yari, former APC National Organizing Secretary, Senator Osita Izunaso, Senator Jibrin Barau and Senator Sani Musa (313).
The Coordinator of the South South Women Professionals and former candidate of the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly Nsit Atai Constituency, Hon. Blessing Ossom said Akpabio’s Senate Presidency would achieve the 35% Affirmative Order long sought for.
In her statement issued in Abuja over the weekend, she said, “Taking a look at the pedigree of Senator Akpabio in corporate governance, it is our considered opinion that Nigeria and Nigerians will benefit earnestly from his vast wealth of experience. Nigeria needs at this time experienced hands to harness its economic and natural potentials and transform the same to tangible results for the benefit of Nigerians and humanity.
“We as mothers from the six States of the South South geo-political zone of the All Progressives Congress hereby align ourselves with the decision of the National leadership of our Party, wherein our National leaders released a statement, zoning the Senate Presidency of the 10th Senate to the South South geo-political zone, and nominating Senator Akpabio for the position. We thank our leaders for standing on the side of truth, fairness, and justice.
“We are aware that during the reign of Senator Akpabio as the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, he ensured that the State was placed on the world map by investing massively in human capital and infrastructural developments. We cannot wait to see him bring his wealth of experience to the Senate in order to stabilise the administration of the incoming Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu-led government.”
The statement further added; “It is a common knowledge that women benefited in numerous ways during the administration of Senator Akpabio as Governor. It is very fresh in our memories how he built houses for widows and for the very poor and vulnerable women in Akwa Ibom State. It would also interest Nigerians to note that his wife, Mrs. Unomma Ekatte Akpabio championed the cause of women and businesses that were established, which transformed them from abject poverty status to affluence of wealth in no distant time. Of course, this earned Mrs. Akpabio the popular “Eka Esit Mbom” (meaning the mother of merciful heart) of Akwa Ibom State.
“Senator Akpabio as Commissioner, Governor, Senator, and Minister of the Federal Republic has left no one in doubt that he is more than capable and courageous to deliver and handle the responsibilities of a higher office such as the President of the Senate.
“Knowing Akpabio’s antecedents, we are sure that he will champion the 35 percent affirmative order, wherein women will occupy percentage of government positions. Women have proven very capable of being excellent managers and administrators, and therefore, we support Senator Akpabio because it is our desire to see our members occupy sensitive positions of leadership. It is very glaring that as mothers, whenever there is mis-governance, looting and squandering of public resources, the women bear the highest brunt because we live with the pains of seeing our lovely children leaving Nigeria for greener pastures in their numbers.
“We hereby discountenance and disassociate ourselves from a faceless group of women by the name South South Women Compatriots, wherein they claim that they rejected Senator Akpabio as the Senate President. We encourage well-meaning Nigerians to ignore them as it is our view that they are paid political jobbers.
“We are of the view that from 1999 till date, the South South geo-political zone has not produced a Senate President and it is fair and just that every zone line up behind the South-South zone to produce the Senate President at this critical time. In the last count, the South East geo-political zone has produced 5 (five) senate presidents from 1999 till date and equally produced Deputy Senate President for 8 years. The North Central has produced and the North East has produced Senate Presidents.
“We therefore call on all other zones to reciprocate the good gestures of the south south; by supporting a proud son of South South geo-political zone at this critical time for the position of the Senate President.”
The APC Professional women are drawn from the six states of South South geo-political zone.