Thursday, February 22, 2018


Ndifreke P. Akpan (Govt. House)

Following his earlier endorsement by Fathers of Faith recently, Christian Leaders in Akwa Ibom State have announced their resolve to start mobilizing their members and associations to unite in one voice and support the re-election of Governor Udom Emmanuel in 2019.

They said they have started to ensure that they mobilize people in various Local Government Areas to register since the Independent Electoral Commission will not count prayer points but votes from registered voters.

This was the position of religious leaders in the state during a breakfast meeting with Governor Udom Emmanuel at Hilltop Mansion in Uyo.

The Spiritual Fathers whose message was conveyed by Pastor Umo Eno told the Governor that they have moved themselves into a platform known as Akwa Ibom Christian Assembly to be able to galvanize God's Children across the state, maintaining that, "gone are those days where the church is just confined to prayers and we need to like you said, watch and pray." 

Among slated events by the Christian Fathers is a conference, "Dominion mandate conference" between March 14 and 15, where international speakers would join the state religious leaders to energize and enlighten the people on the need to stand on the side of truth.

They also announced that other programmes such as door to door campaigns in every home, villages, will be embarked upon to enable massive participation by their followers in the state to enable the return of  Governor Emmanuel who they described as a true believer.

Commenting on the honour on the Governor, Former Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria, Dr. Sunday Mbang recounted that the Christian Leaders had promised to support the Governor to return to office in 2019.

He said the entire Christian community in the state are ready to give support to the Governor and the appropriate structures are in place for this purpose.

"So I say, 2019, you will continue as Governor of Akwa Ibom. I already know you are a winner and anyone who doesn't believe that, I wish him luck, because I am a child of God in the proper sense of the word," the Prelate Emeritus of the Methodist Church of Nigeria asserted.

Responding, Governor Udom Emmanuel appreciated the clerics for their huge show of support to his administration.

He said he was overwhelmed by their earlier show of support saying it was very significant because it came from the Spiritual Fathers of the state.

"If there is one body that one must never joke with, it should be your Spiritual Fathers. They are the most powerful human beings on earth." 

He said the Fathers of Faith are the only ones that can ask the most powerful leaders in the world to kneel down, and they are obeyed, maintaining that his invitation was only to tell them thank you for their support, only to be surprised by such magnitude of endorsement from the spiritual fathers.

"Believe me I never lobbied for this and I am sure you people know I speak my sincere heart. It's just as the spirit directs that the Fathers and Grandfathers of Faith have come up to do this and this is really unprecedented. I am overwhelmed, I am almost getting emotional."

He said the support has placed a huge burden on him to do everything possible never to disappoint the servants of God.

He said despite pockets of disparaging outbursts against him by people, he has often remained focused on his task of service delivery, maintaining that the expectations on him have not allowed him to be distracted.

He urged the Christian Fathers to sensitize their worshippers on the need to register and acquire their voter's cards.

Apart from making one eligible to vote, the Governor said it was necessary for the purpose of data and statistics, since no population census has been conducted for a long period in the country.

"If you look at Nigeria, there has not been census for a very long period but we still use statistics everyday to allocate resources. By this week they will go for statutory allocation meeting, how do you think they arrive at those census figures because population is one of the indices that is being used?"

He said that Akwa Ibom should record at least   3million registered voters to reflect over half of the state's population and urged indigenes of the state resident elsewhere, to also come home and register.

The Governor appreciated those who have so far contributed to the building of the ecumenical center in the state, saying he was very impressed and encouraged.

The Governor who thanked pastors and churches that have identified with the International Worship Center project through donations, said it was a spiritual matter, "it takes people like you to understand that altar that is being raised in this state." 

Recounting how a family just recently surprised him with a cheque of One Million Naira for the project, he said he has even urged his family members to make savings from their pocket money and also support the building of the International Worship Center.
Highlight of the occasion was formal presentation of t-shirts, face caps and stickers to the Governor by Arch Bishop Cletus Bassey, and special prayers for the Governor led by Arch Bishop Udofia.

Others in attendance were Rev. Uma Ukpai, Bishop Isaiah Isong, Chairman of Govt House Prayer meeting, Pastor Emmanuel Bassey, Chairman of Qua Iboe Church  and that of the United Evangelical Church, the Regional pastors and area pastors of different denominations.




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