The Akwa Ibom State government has broken silence on the recent attack on some communities in the state by men suspected to be Fulani herdsmen.
The Senior Special Assistant on Security Matters to Gov. Udom Emmanuel, Captain Iniobong Ekong (rtd) in an interaction on Monday with journalists in Uyo, the state capital, said the government had taken proactive steps to prevent recurrence either from the herdsmen or the community.
It was reported that suspected Fulani herdsmen on Friday attacked and killed a farmer in Ntek community in Ukanafun Local Government Area of the state. This followed the Mkpat Enin Local Government episode where two were killed and four injured by suspected Fulani herdsmen.
But Ekong in a reaction said, “These are unfortunate incidents but I must tell you as a matter of fact that it is not anywhere near those things people are saying.
“In fact, the state government is passionate about the security of its citizens. We don’t play politics with it. Within the context of being proactive and the protection of citizens, Akwa Ibom government is deeply in the relationship and working in synergy with the Hausa/Fulani settlement resident within the state.
“Government has also taken enough steps to prevent influx that cannot be controlled. The isolated case in Mkpat Enin was unfortunate and we have to a great extent understood that it was not an invasion but it
are an unfortunate thing and security agencies have addressed it adequately.
“The issue in Ukanafun about three days ago is also another case of misunderstanding and you see it is something that we are always quick to generalize when it happens.
“But we have also isolated it and we are addressing it immediately to prevent reprisal from either of both sides, because be it as it may nobody want anybody to die in anybody’s hands no matter where you come from.”
Also, Ekong who was recently freed by his abductors narrated how he was offered juicy position and money he never had before to relinquish his position and move to the opposition All Progressives Congress.
Recall that Capt. Ekong was picked up during the elections by soldiers on the petition purportedly written by Senator Godswill Akpabio (now) Minister of the Niger Delta Affairs.
The security Assistant said, “The promises I was given were so tempting and nobody could say no, but I said no. I didn’t know-how. It came with the position, it came with finance, it came with promises, and it came with everything. And it came at the time I probably didn’t have those things that came.
“But I thank God that I stood where I stood and for one single second in the entire episode, I never for one day wanted to think about it. I was only concerned about the relationship and interpretation.”