BY: VITALIS UGOH, Calabar
All wranglings surrounding the certificate issue of the All Progressive’s Congress (APC) governorship candidate in Cross River state have been rested following a a final clearance from National Working Committee (NWC) of the party.
The party issued the final clearance based on the attestation from WAEC confirming that Senator Otu attended Salvation Army Secondary School in Akai Ubiom of Akwa Ibom state in 1977 and genuinely secured his certificate.
Giving clarification on the certificate matter, the Media Aide to Senator Otu, Barr. Ekpenyong Akiba, said the highest hierarchy of a political party which is the NWC has cleared Otu even though the position of the committee as was clearly stated was inconclusive since they knew that there was another step that have to be climbed for a final position and that step is the NWC where the National Organising Secretary of the party is in charge of the conduct of the election and the manager of party activities.
The National Organizing Secretary, Mr. Sulaiman Mohammad Argungu in a letter to the Chairman 2022 Governorship Primary Election Committee, said, “please be informed that Mr. Bassey Edet Otu has been cleared to participate in the governorship primary election. To this end it will be appreciated if he is accorded all respect and privileges deserving of a governorship aspirant in Cross River state ” .
Akiba said, “so as at today his name has also been uploaded on the official website of the party where other candidates across the state are uploaded. His name as we speak is going to be forwarded to INEC as the candidate of the party in Cross River State. If Prince Otu was not duly screened and cleared the party would not forward such name to INEC.
“So all that has to do with Prince Otu has been put to rest by the position of the NWC of the party which the constitution empowers to oversee the activities of the party at all level”.
He said, “Prince Otu certificate for me is a laughable situation for anyone to begin to question it. We have been through the ages not today that we know that our academic situation is having some question marks. In those days, in the 80’s you cannot even have matriculation if your credentials are not properly scrutinized. So for Prince Otu to have gone through school in the 80’s and was employed in a bank like Mercantile Bank is a clear fact that he holds genuine certificate.
“You cannot pass through any screening in the bank if you have not submitted your credentials. Even in my own time, I couldn’t have studied law if I did not have all my credentials, I went through a panel where they looked at my credentials, so Prince Otu having worked in the bank, having contested in five elections from 2003, the meaning is that he has appeared before five different panels for scrutiny from different political parties PDP, Labour Party, APC etc. and he contested in the election passing through five committees and after your screening in the party you also pass through screening at the level of INEC”.
He said, “Prince Otu finished from Duke Town Primary School and the records are there and straight, he went on to study at Salvation Army secondary school in Akai Ubium, the school is still there, Prince Otu went further to study sociology in University of Calabar and came out in flying colours…colours and you known the position of WAEC, the moment the attestation certificate is issued it is a confirmation, a final document. WAEC cannot attest to what they don’t have and for some people because they saw a passport, the recent as we are seated, if you apply for attestation, your passport will be there, it is an updated system”.
Akiba said Cross Riverian should expect that Prince will bring growth and prosperity and contribute to human capital development and security.