**As Ekere Celebrates Rival’s Appointment
The All Progressives Congress governorship candidate in Akwa Ibom State Umana Umana has thrown his supporters into shock by turning down his appointment as Managing Director of the Oil and Gas Export Free Zone Authority, hours after he was nominated.
Umana who confided with his close supporters shortly after his name was announced yesterday cited an infringement on his integrity and the allege manipulation to ease him out of relevance, as the main reasons for his turning down of the offer.
“I have contributed immensely to the sustenance of APC in the country using my personal funds to service the structure, and today the only way I can be rewarded is to be dumped in the high sea,” Umana allegedly said amidst sobs.
It would be recalled that Umana Umana was last week said to have intensified lobby to be considered for ministerial appointment, citing the poor handling of the economy by the Minister of Budget and National Planning Senator Udoma Udoma, as well as the Minister’s failure to service the structure of the party in his home state.
APC supporters had three months ago announced excitedly on the media that it was Umana who turned down a nomination as Managing Director of NDDC and opted to nominate former deputy governor Nsima Ekere in his stead.
However while he was waiting for the imminent federal cabinet tsunami that could have drawn him closer to the seat of government, the former secretary to the Akpabio-led administration was hit below the belt with the appointment that takes him five steps down the ladder.
By hierarchy, Umana is to report to the Federal Controller of Trade and Investment in the Port Harcourt zonal headquarters who reports to the Director of Trade in the federal ministry who also passes to buck to the Permanent Secretary for onward transmission to the Honourable Minister of Trade and Investment.
Disturbed by this development, Umana who is said to be very religious went into a serious prayer and fasting session with his wife and at about noon earlier today decided to throw in the towel, citing the humiliating nature of the new job.
A close confidante of the ruffled APC chieftain revealed that Umana had during his time as SSG had course to interact with the management team of the Oil and Gas Free Trade Zone, who usually besieged his office to obtain him for their upkeep.
Umana who is now of the APC, and should he accept this appointment now, which governor in the entire PDP south south will even give him attention and support.
However, a source at the presidency hinted that his appointment was part of the undercurrent by Mr Rotimi Amaechi and the incoming Managing Director of NDDC Obong Nsima Ekere to push him out of the way, to pave the way for Mr Ekere’s sole control of APC in Akwa Ibom state.
But in swift message of appreciation to the President, Mr. Ekere who appeared happier than the appointee said that it was clear Mr. Umana was chosen on merit given his education, experience, exposure and capacity.
He pointed out that Mr. Umana had demonstrated all those attributes in his previous appointments at the state level and congratulated him on the new appointment.
Mr. Ekere hailed Mr. Umana as an outstanding economist, a consummate administrator and an astute politician and expressed confidence that the appointee would deliver on the new assignment which he described as challenging.
In his reaction, the coordinator of PDP fans club in the state Mr Endurance Johnson in stating the low nature of the offer advised APC fans that “Before you come here to congratulate someone for being appointed into a taskforce, do well to ask yourself who heads the Nigerian Railway Corporation, Bureau of Public Procurement, Petroleum Trust Development Fund and National Investment Promotion Council, out of the newly appointed 12 heads of board and commissions…”
Source: From our Email box.