by crossriverwatch admin
Chairman of Obudu Local Government Area, Emmanuel Ikwen has said that the award bestowed on him by the Grassroots Leadership Center yesterday in Abuja was as a result of his performance as he has impacted positively on the Obudu people since he took over the mantle of leadership.
He also accused Senator Ben Ayade who is representing Cross River North in the National Assembly of plotting to remove him despite the fact that the Senator was one of the first persons who got contracts from his administration.
Ikwen who was a co-winner of the best performed Local Government Chairman in the South-South said while fielding questions from journalists at the Sheraton Hotel venue of the award ceremony that he had been able to restore peace and stability in the council area and that everybody from the area was happy with his achievement.
“Before now we have been having skirmishes with our neighboring state, Benue State. Since I came on board, I made sure that there is peace between us and the two Local Government Areas we share boundary with from Benue State. Now we behave like we are from the same state,” he said.
He said his administration has been able to stem cultism and armed robbery from in the local government area and have also done a lot of projects in youth development that have touched the lives of the people.
The council chairman denied allegations that he bought the award with the council’s N6million and accused some politicians that claim the position of godfathers of trying to dent his administration because he tried to reconcile all aggrieved sons and daughters of the council.
He specifically accused Senator Ben Ayade of working to unseat him and frustrate his second term ambition. He said “The Senator paid councilors two million Naira to impeach me but the move failed.
“The syndrome of godfatherism is very pronounced in Obudu. Like this ceremony, I was told by my detractors that meetings were held with the Senator to bring EFCC to arrest me and a lot of people called me not to attend if I was not yet in Abuja. I said I will go because I don’t have anything to hide.
“The Senator worked for my emergence as a chairman and I also in return gave the Senator maximum support to emerge and the Senator was among the first people that got contracts from the local government when I started awarding contract.” He said.
The Chairman claimed that “some people went to the Senator and told him that I have brought the different factions together and brought them to return to the PDP and the Senator picked offence and started plotting to remove me and put the Secretary of Council”.
But the Senator in an earlier interview with crossriverwatch condemned the move by members of the legislative council to impeach the Chairman. He said: “I cannot destroy what I built. Emma is my product so I cannot be part of what will bring him down. Those who know me know that I don’t play that kind of politics. That is not my political style. I condemn any attempt by anyone to impeach the Chairman. And tell it to everyone that even if he were impeached, I will go to any length to make sure he is reinstated.
“He must complete his tenure. But he should however not allow his quest for second term make him abandon his political family. He should know that with all that I did for him, he should still have the sanity of looking at history and remember how he got to where he is. The PDP in the state does not play that kind of politics. Whatever happened should be seen as a disagreement between the same political family and should be resolved within the family.I totally disagree with the notion of impeachment.”
Our source reports that the award ceremony was colorful with the Obudu Chairman pulling the largest delegation with over thirty persons including the Paramount Ruler of Obudu Local Government, Chief Uti J.D. Agba, the Vice Chairman of the Local Government, Hon. Agnes Atsu, the Leader of the Legislative Council, Hon. Ugar Andeshi, the Special Assistant to the Chairman on Due Process amongst others.
Controversy has trailed the award since it was revealed that the Chairman unilaterally obtained an overdraft from the Obudu branch of First Bank Plc to procure the award. He was threatened with impeachment by the legislative council but the moved failed on the floor of the House.
Photographs from the award ceremony will be published in the first hard copy edition of crossriverwatch that is arriving the state by the end of March 2013. Ask your vendor for a copy by month end.
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