Against repeated warnings by the Akwa Ibom State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel and other leaders of the state, that no member of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) should be involved in administering fetish oaths on their supporters, the soon coming 2020 local government elections is already enmeshed in series of oath taking.
While fetish oaths have been reported in a few places across the state, that of Urue Offong Oruko Local Government Area has been established.
It was not surprising when Akwa Ibom citizens and residents woke up to a trending video on various social media platforms on Wednesday, August 12, 2020, of a councillorship aspirant, Mr. Friday Ukim of Ward 7 in Urue Offong Oruko LGA, captured live in a shrine, doing incantations.
In the short video, Friday Ukim had clearly mentioned his witnesses and called on the Member, Urue Offong Oruko State Constituency in the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly, Mr. Asukwo Archibong to accord him all his entitlements.
Accordingly, Mr Ukim who spoke in Oron language, appealed to the spirit god that if Asukwo Archibong surrendered his right to him, he should be safe, but that if he refused, the voodoo should eliminate him and his whole family.
Further enquiries however revealed that the House Member had entered into a fetish covenant with Mr Ukim, when the former wanted to be supported for a second term.
A source said that Mr Asukwo Archibong had agreed to support Mr Friday Ukim to become a councilor in Ward 7, if he was supported to win the stiff 2019 contest against Mr Omen Bassey of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
But prior to the screening, a younger brother to Mr Asukwo Archibong was said to have been drafted in to vie for the same councillorship position against Mr Ukim.
Suspecting that Mr Archibong would not live to the terms of their agreement, Mr Ukim took to the shrine to protest the insincerity of the House Member.
Recall also that the same Mr Asukwo Archibong was said to have administered oath on six Ward chairmen in the area.
Reports say the oath was to compel them to support Archibong’s anointed chairmanship candidate of the area, Mrs. Precious Selong.
This was exposed by the Ward Chairman of Ward 9, Mr. Godwin Owokere who reported the incident.
While it was gathered that stakeholders of the area, including a former deputy Governor, Ambassador Etim Okpoyo, have condemned the development, many citizens of the state have called on Governor Udom Emmanuel to immediately address the issue, as it flouts his policy of zero tolerance to oath taking and cultism.
Credit: Joseph Atainyang