An alleged marginalization of Oron people, said to be the third largest ethnic group in Akwa Ibom State, has drawn the ire of Engr Ita Awak, a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the State.
In a press statement made available to our reporter and titled ‘Dethroning the Evils of Akpabioism’, Awak, who is currently the Director of Airworthiness Standards (DAWS) in Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), posited that the Orons were not faring better under the present administration.
“The crude hand that Godswill Akpabio dealt the Oro people, the pathological hatred that misguided him to enact a historic and monumental betrayal of the Oro ethnic group in Akwa Ibom State leaves an indelible, evergreen and painful scar in the heart and consciousness of Oro natives that will mar the political relationship between the Annang and Oro for decades to come.
“Long before the disaster called Godswill Obot Akpabio happened to Akwa Ibom State and people, the core political leadership of the State used to be made up of Ibibio, Annang and Oro people. However, when this chap became governor, this changed. For the eight years Akpabio reigned, Annang was governor; Ibiobio was deputy governor, SSG, Speaker AKHA, and Chairman of the Ruling Party. The Oro natives were nowhere near where governmental decisions were made.
“This is still continuing under the Udom Emmanuel era. The Ibiobio ethnic group has produced the governor, Speaker AKHA, chairman of the Ruling Party etc; the Annang have the deputy governor. And according to the Akpabio plot, the Oro natives are out of the equation. I am deeply saddened by the unfair and unkind treatment of political exclusion and marginalization of my ethnic group in Akwa State,” the statement read in part.
Sounding philosophical, Awak said, “lessons from human history and my glimpse into the operation of divine laws assures me that the evil that Godswill Obot Akpabio ill-advisedly used the privileges and powers of the exalted office of the governor to do against the Oro people shall not last for too long. I am cocksure that the time shall come when Oro people shall progress from total exclusion to total inclusion.”
Our reporter learnt that Akwa Ibom is made up of the Ibibio ethnic group, the Annangs and the Orons. The Ibibios and the Annangs have produced Governors in Chief Victor Attah and Obong Godswill Akpabio but Oron ethnic group is yet to produce any. The Orons had accused Akpabio of foisting Gov Udom Emmanuel, another Ibibio son, on Akwa Ibom thereby jeopardizing the tripod arrangement by which the State was created.