Former Federal Lawmaker and Elder Statesman, Chief Nduese Essien has raised alarm over the recent spate of unguarded utterances from the Senate President, Senator Godswill Akpabio, saying they are capable of instigating needless chaos in Akwa Ibom State and in Nigeria.

In an open letter addressed to Senator Akpabio titled: Modesty is a Virtue to Embrace, Chief Nduese Essien, said Senator Akpabio has abdicated his role of leading a formidable legislature that is expected to put the executive in check, make laws that will strengthen the wobbling economy, but has rather chosen to be a cheerleader for the executive arm of government.

Calling on the former Governor to show restraint and avoid inflammatory and divisive statements, Chief Nduese Essien, among other things, condemned Akpabio for misleading Nigerians during the Senate Plenary last Tuesday that Governors were given additional 30 Billion Naira to their statutory allocation by the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) to cushion the food and inflation challenges bedeviling the country.

He said as the third citizen of the country, the former governor of Akwa Ibom State should cross-check information before making it public in order not dent his reputation.

The former Minister for Lands, Housing and Urban Development further frowned at the Senate President’s speech during the State’s Thanksgiving Anniversary in September 2023 where he stated that all local government areas in Akwa Ibom State, are oil producing and as such, there should be no distinction in terms of sharing resources or benefits.

Such a statement, according to Chief Essien gives credence to why the Senate President, at his time as Governor deprived the oil producing communities their rights and why he failed to establish an Oil Mineral Producing Areas Commission as seen in other oil producing states while also diverting NDDC projects to non oil producing communities while he served as minister.

“Sir, I am compelled by a sense of duty to address the inconsistencies that have come to characterise your political expressions, particularly within our beloved Akwa Ibom State. Your Excellency, during the 36th Anniversary Thanksgiving service of our state creation at the Apostolic Church in Uyo in 2023, you declared all local government areas in the state as oil producing, and that there should be no distinction among them in terms of sharing of resources or benefits.

” I was shocked because throughout your eight years as Governor of the state, you never said so though you were blatant in depriving the oil producing areas of their rights. You refused to establish the Oil Minerals Producing Areas Commission in the state, despite demands and pressures, thus making Akwa Ibom the only oil producing state without this commission. You also diverted most of the NDDC projects to non-oil producing areas of the state. It is now clear how and why you operated that way”, he said.

Chief Nduese Essien also condemned Akpabio for bluntly directing the State Governor not to implement the Akwa Ibom State Map which was promulgated by the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly and signed into law by the immediate past Governor, a statement which the former Lawmaker described as a baseless call for executive rascality and wondered if Akpabio could give such advice to President Bola Tinubu on a law passed by the National Assembly.

The letter also condemned Senator Akpabio for his claims on Qua River Hotel in Eket, and accused him of neglecting Eket throughout his eight years as governor, noting that the concern for Eket by Akpabio is suspicious.

Chief Nduese Essien pointed out that as Commissioner in the State Executive Council at the time, Akpabio was involved in selling off the flourishing hotel in Eket for a paltry 50 million naira, while embarking on other hotels like Ibom Tropicana Hotel, Four Point by Sheraton Hotel, without completing them in his administration.

Chief Nduese Essien also pointed out with dismay, the recent statement made by the Senate President concerning the location of ExxonMobil where he told Oron leaders that the office was to be sited in Oron but politics made it to be taken to Eket. Chief Essien stated that as at the time the decision was taken to site the ExxonMobil office, Senator Godswill Akpabio was five years old hence had no idea how and why that decision was taken adding that his recent romance with the Oro people is aimed at inciting divisive sentiments among the peace loving people of the state.

Chief Essien who saw Akpabio as one attempting to create instability as a political tool to further his 2027 ambition of capturing the entire State for APC, queried that if Akpabio loved Oron like he wants to paint, he would have made them produce a Governor to succeed him in 2015 when he had the opportunity.

Chief Essien also cautioned the Senate President to concentrate with national politics and find a way of getting the country out of its current predicament, urging him to shelve his alleged plans of “forcefully taking over the state in 2027”.

Chief Essien acknowledged that Akpabio has been his political ally, and that their relationship has been mutually beneficial.

He drew the attention of the Senate President to the successes recorded by the National Assembly of the 1999- 2007 era, and therefore, advised his former political ally to channel his energy more towards building a strong economy for Nigeria, noting that Akpabio can only achieve that by “talking less, listening more to his colleagues and feeling the pulse of Nigerians.”