Iniubong ANAKO – Eyen Iman Ibom
Paul Ekpo is a name synonymous with politics, hence the sobriquet Paul “Politics” Ekpo, which in recent times, has gained oratoral traction at different fora by key political players. He is an iconoclastic political figure and a foremost, most prudent party helmsman in the history of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP in Akwa Ibom and Nigeria.
His towering influence and sagacity in the harmonious conduct of party affairs in the state from his ascension in 2012 till date is not only legendary but a classic case study and a benchmark to beat by his would-be successors.
Like the Shakespearean epitaph, He came, He saw and He has unarguably conquered the hurdles which naturally are associated with managing a political party affair in a clime like ours. An illustration would suffice, here: a Political Party the world over could be liken to a steeply but steamy ocean where the wildest of aquatic animals of various colouration lock horns to feast on the available preys. And, in managing such overbearing interest – where all scamper for the few – the one at the helms of affairs must not only be prudent but must be highly discerning and courageous. This has been the bug on the lab of Paul Ekpo and thankfully, even a pundit with the most acerbic inkling, can’t fault the fact that Paul “Politics” Ekpo has delivered with a plus.
Call him the perfect political mixer and you won’t be far from the truth. The peaceful political situation in Akwa Ibom PDP and even in Nigeria before, during and after electioneering testifies much about this position.
It’s on record that, the last primaries conducted by the People’s Democratic Party under the watch of Obong Paul Ekpo was adjuged as the best in the country by no mean pundits – both national and international. The icing on the cake was the nomination of the incumbent Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel unopposed; as unprecedented the feat was, it’s however a confirmation of the harmonious intra-party machinery instituted by Paul Ekpo led Executive.
This is the more reason Paul Ekpo’s leadership of the party deserves award of accolades from the believers and stakeholders of the umbrella party.
Aside from his effective management of the party in the state, Paul has a far reaching influence in the efficiency of the State Inter-party Affairs. This could be the most cancerous sects(ion) to tread as a ruling party, because of its permeative divergent views as interest group. So, as a ruling party it behooves on it to manage to a bearable extent, the likely discordant approaches and positions of other interest groups to a common ground, to prevent or avert a full blown crisis – which would turnout to be in favour of the opposition. And this, the Paul of Akwa Ibom Politics has got a creditable pass.
As a stakeholder and believer in the Divine Mandate School of Thought, Paul “Apostle” Ekpo hasn’t allowed the rigour of party politics to fence him off from also mobilizing structures for the governor’s reelection, rather he kept tab with his primary Constituents on the way to go. He is a man of few words but tangible actions. When he speaks, one clearly heard a man imbued with action, direction and consolidation from his roaring vocal cord. No wonder, his directive that all units of the party be up to task of delivering the mandate of the party, was treated as a matching order, which is evident in the landslide victory of the party in the state.
As a gold fish, which they say, has no hidden place in the ocean, Ekpo’s towering achievements in the state has gained national traction. He’s currently occupying the revered office of the Chair-of-Chairs of the State PDP in Nigeria having been unanimously nominated and duly ratified by all the proponents of the party in the states of the nation.
This may perhaps be his last lab as the PDP Chair in the state, but his imprints could only be reproduced and not over riden. The culture of excellence, patroitism, diplomacy and consolidation that he has propagated overtime will remain crisly-crispy in the times marble. His gut and out-of-the-box strategies must be saved as a future pamphlet for successful political party management.
To this end, there’s no gainsaying the fact that, Paul Ekpo is the most celebrated state party chairman in the history of PDP in Nigeria. This’s the more reason, I duff my hat, before the curtain falls!
Iniubong ANAKO is a Public/Political Affairs Analyst and can be reached via (firstname.lastname@example.org).