Tony Anichebe Uyo.
Traders in Akwa Ibom have urged Governor Udom Emmanuel to accept the offer by the Brekete Family Media and other well meaning Nigerians to step forward and rescue Nigeria, even as they have pledged a N500million donation as their own contribution for the actualisation of the Presidential bid.
They have also concluded plans to down tools on Saturday, close down all shops for a mega rally in Uyo to support Pastor Umo Eno’s ambition as Governor.
Speaking on behalf of the traders, Wednesday in Uyo, the Akwa Ibom State capital, President of the Akwa Ibom State Traders Association, Mr. Idorenyin Raphael said the call was necessitated by the Governor’s track record of performance so far in less than 7 years as Governor.
He explained that Nigeria at the moment needs a leader in the mould of Mr. Emmanuel with proven track records of performance, competence, credibility and capacity to fix its cracks and restore the country.
Raphael who also doubles as the South/South & South-East Chairman, National Association of Nigerian Traders as well as the Special Assistant to the Governor on Traders Matters, disclosed that the traders had carried out a thorough appraisal of the contenders for the nation’s Number One seat, and came to the conclusion that Mr. Udom Emmanuel remains the best man for the job.
“Now, that Nigeria has challenges, now that Nigeria has a problem, we need such a performer in the person of Udom Emmanuel. We are asking him to run for the office of the President. He shoud not be silent, he has what it takes to transform Nigeria”.
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He described Governor Udom Emmanuel as the most traders- friendly Governor the state has ever produced, and lauded him for the N2billion business support and free interest loan he gave to the traders. Mr. Raphael hinted that another interest free loan to the tune of N4billion is underway for Akwa Ibom traders.
Describing the Governor as a promise keeper, Idorenyin Raphael stated; “He said he was going to appoint traders into his government as aides. He promised to donate buses to the traders and also promised to provide interest free loans of N2 billion to traders. We were thinking it’s politics, but within 30 days in office, he appointed me as his Special Assistant on Traders Matters, he appointed four other traders as his aides on Projects Monitoring and Market Monitoring”.
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Flanked by other Market leaders, the Governor’s aide described a leading Governorship aspirant in the build up to the 2023 Governorship election in Akwa Ibom State, Pastor Umo Bassey Eno as ‘the best for the State’.
He said Umo Eno who is also a trader given the nature of his business, has the full backing of Akwa Ibom traders.
“Now that a trader is coming to transform Akwa Ibom State, he has our support. We traders don’t believe in micro-zoning. We have assessed those aspiring to govern us and have found Umo Eno as the best among all of them.
“Ask those contesting if they have created a kiosk in all their lives? Ask them how many people they have employed?. We did our assessment and the only man qualified is Pastor Umo Eno”.
“Look at his investments. Akwa Ibom traders are routing for Umo Eno. Don’t also forget that traders are also delegates in the forthcoming primary election of the party. I can mention so many of them who own shops and are our members”
“On Saturday we are going to close our markets just for our man, a trader of proven integrity.
“During his brief stint as Commissioner for Lands and Water Resources, he signed over 200 certificates of occupancy for traders in Akwa Ibom and remains the only man that consulted traders and intimated them of his aspiration,” Mr Raphael added.
This position was also collaborated by the State chairman of National Automobile Technicians Association, NATA, Elder Umoh Paul, the Woman Leader of Mrs Magdalene Udom, the President of Akwa Ibom State Timber Dealers Association, Deacon Effiong Ekpenyong, and the State Chairman of the Cooperative Society of Nigeria, Mr Jonah Asuquo.