The Christmas holiday promises to be a very busy period for the former Secretary to the Government of Akwa Ibom State, Obong Umana Okon Umana, who has resumed active politicking in the hope of realising his long-held ambition of becoming the governor of Akwa Ibom State in 2015.
We gathered that the erstwhile “strong man of Akwa Ibom politics” who has kept a low profile since his unceremonious sack from the Akpabio administration has fully rejigged his campaign machinery and alongside his loyalists and supporters, is reaching out to influential stakeholders across the state. “He is scheduled to meet with special party delegates in the weeks ahead to solicit for their supports and loyalty”, a source who begged not to be mentioned revealed to us.
The source added that Umana who was said to have been instrumental to Akpabio’s emergence as governor is determined to give Governor Akpabio and his anointed candidate ”a run for their money” even as he has vowed that only death could stop him from realising his ambition of becoming the governor of Akwa Ibom State.
We also learnt that Umana advised his supporters not to lose hope in the course of the battle ahead as a better future awaits them upon his eventual victory.
It would be recalled that Obong Umana , an Ibibio from Nsit Ubium Local Government Area of the state was booted out of office as SSG last July in the wake of his open declaration to vie for the gubernatorial ticket of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and had temporarily suspended his campaign following Governor Akpabio’s open endorsement of the new Secretary to the state government, Mr. Udom Emmanuel.
Political analysts believe the last is yet to be heard of the friendship gone awry between Umana and Akpabio as the former SSG may actually be coming back for his pound of flesh in their hide-and-seek game. Those in the know swear that Umana sees his ascension to the throne of Ibom as his birth right and a debt that Akpabio must pay.
Umana and Akpabio had both functioned as two term commissioners in the Victor Attah administration. While Akpabio was the Commissioner for Local Governments and Chieftaincy Affairs, Umana handled the finance portfolio for eight years before being appointed by the Akpabio administration into the lofty office of the Secretary to the State Government in 2007, a positioned he held till July 2013. As at the time of leaving office, Umana had gone down in history as the longest serving secretary to the state government in recent times.