*Says Gov Emmanuel Has Done So Much For Akwa Ibom State College of Education
By Prince Bassey-
UYO – THE Provost, Akwa Ibom State College of Education, Afaha Nsit, Professor Matthew Expo has denied reports linking him to the MD/CEO of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Mr. Nsima Ekere over an alleged pact to mobilize support for him on his 2019 gubernatorial ambition.
Prof Ekpo in an interview with IBOM REPORTERS on Tuesday alleged that certain aggrieved management staff of the institution who had before now benefited from the irregularities and fraudulent activities that marred the institution were trying to cast aspersion on him, in an attempt to obliterate the harmonious relationship currently being enjoyed between the institution and the State Government.
He said: “Since I was appointed as Provost of this College, I have not met or spoken with Nsima Ekere. Yes, I’m from Ikot Abasi. But it is not all those that are from Ikot Abasi that you have spoken to. Let me put it on record that I am a lecturer and an academician and I was sent to this institution to restore the erase the rot that was in this place. I did not come here to pitch my tent with Nsima Ekere. That report is not true and can never be true.”
Media reports on Tuesday alleged that Professor Ekpo “had ‘nicodemusly’ ditched his employers, the Akwa Ibom State Government and has opted to support the ambition of the MD/CEO of NDDC, Obong Nsima Ekere if the former Governor emerges the gubernatorial candidate of the APC ahead of the 2019 governorship election.”
The reports specifically stated that, “Professor Ekpo is angry that the state Government after awarding a contract for the construction of some roads in the college, decided to abandon it. He is alleged to have informed his staff that such development does not go down well with his image as an administrator and hence the need for him to seek the services of the MD/CEO of the Niger Delta Development Commission, Obong Nsima Ekere.”
But Professor Ekpo in a quick refutation said the institution enjoys a cordial relationship with the State Government, describing the report as malicious, unfounded and capable of causing a breach of peace and stability enjoyed in the College. He disclosed that over N350 Million naira was approved and released by Governor Udom Emmanuel for the immediate fixing of infrastructure in the school as against the budget of N300 Million of the institution presented to the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly Committee on Finance and Appropriation in December 2017.
“Gov Udom Emmanuel is spending so much for the accreditation of the College as a Degree awarding institution after years of neglect by previous administrations in the State. He is committed to education in the state. Why should someone be ungrateful for giving you above what you budgeted for? I’m thinking that the person that wrote this report did that from a standpoint of ignorance,” he added.