Sunday, 2 September 2018

Why Ikpi Ubana is PDP's best shot for Yakurr 1 state constituency


There is a famous expression in English that goes thus: When the going gets tough, the tough get going – meaning when the situation becomes difficult, the strong will work harder to meet the challenge. Sometimes, when we are in a tough situation, all we need is to put our best foot out and victory will be certain. 

As the 2019 general elections and the People's Democratic Party's primaries draws closer it is pertinent for the PDP family in Cross River to wake to the reality that the game has changed as they now have stronger oppositions unlike previous elections where there were no or weak oppositions. The PDP family in Cross River State therefore, have an obligation not to impose candidates as usual but allow the people's will and choice to prevail so they can stage a good fight.

My concerns today as I put this piece is the position of state house of assembly with specific focus on the Yakurr 1 seat. In recent times there have been agitations for effective representation with a move by some constituents to begin a recall process. But for some reasons beyond mortal explanations the plan never saw the light of the day. 

But that didn't take the mumuring and grumbling away as many till date still have reservertions on the type of representation the good people of Yakurr 1 constituency have been enduring for some years now.

In fact somebody specifically told me that me the last time they had something close to a leader and a representative who knew his job was three Assemblies ago and that the worst is in this 8th Assembly. 

I believe it will not be news to say that the cardinal job of a lawmaker pivots on Legislating, oversight functioning and representing.
I have over the years heard the current Speaker of the Cross River State 8th House of Assembly decried the lack of lawyers and experienced hands into the legislature stating it as a great barrier to effective legislative matters.

It is on this note I want to summit that if the Yakurr 1 state constituency house of Assembly seat must still remain within the PDP, then Barr. Ikpi Ubana Eyong is the best man to fly the Party's flag for some cogent reseaons. 

1. Ikpi is a grass rooter and over the years he has demonstrated his ability to mobilise and gain victory for the party in no small measure. Having served the party as ward chairman, in fact the youngest chairman where he gathered the highest numbers of vote in the entire Yakurr during the 2015 presidential election. Barr. Ikpi is a great mobilizer that must be rewarded for his loyalty and commitment to the party over the years despite several betrayals by the party  

2. He is actually the people's choice and has a large crowd of followers cutting across the entire Yakurr Nation. He understands the need and yearnings of the people and in his little capacity he has been meeting these needs thus the crowd. This goes to demonstrate that he enjoys goodwill among his people more than any other contestant for the job.

3. Barr Ikpi is very much qualified and has a well of experience for the job. For the avoidance of doubt here is a brief summary of the man Ikpi Ubana Eyong.


Barr. Ikpi Ubana Eyong was born to the family of Late Elder (Chief) & Mrs Ubana Ubana Eyong of Kekomkolo, ijom, Ugep in Yakurr LGA, on the 30th day of March 1982. 

He obtained his FSLC from Convent primary school, ugep, after attending St. Josephs Int. Nursery Sch. Ugep. After obtaining his FSLC, he gained admission into the Community secondary school, Ugep where he spent just a year and because his parents wanted to prepare him properly for the challenges ahead, he was moved to the Federal Government College, Ikom. Which at that time was one of the best school's in CRS. Upon obtaining his WASC, he gained admission into the prestigious University of Calabar, where he studied  Law, after which he proceeded to the Nigerian Law School, Bwari, Abuja campus, where he obtained a BL. 

As a young man who was already a lawyer at the age of 26yrs (a record time then), he proceeded to Gombe State, where he served his country with dedication and selflessness.
Because of his hardwork and dedication to duty, the law firm where he served as a youth corper retained him and when his principal in Chambers was appointed SA Legal to the Governor, Barr Ikpi Ubana Eyong became the Head of Chambers with only 3years post call experience.

 He has all his life been in private practice and has worked with many Lawyers and law firms, either as a consultant or a partner. He is a professional negotiator and mediator, he is also a corporate practitioner, accredited by The corporate affairs commission.

Barr. Ikpi Ubana Eyong is an astute politician who had his tutelage in politics from his Late father.
His father's name is a household name in Ugep where he hails from and yakurr at large. He was the Councillor, representing Ugep in the then Old Obubra LGA, after which he contested and lost the Chairmanship of Obubra LGA. Despite the loss, the love and respect he enjoys amongst his people is unrivalled. A disciplinarian and gentleman whose integrity and hardwork has manifested in his seeds.

 As the saying goes, a Lion can only beget his kind. One will have no choice than say that Barr. Ikpi Ubana Eyong is only toying the fathers footsteps as a politician. 

The grass root mobiliser  joined the PDP family and in 2013, he became the Ward Chairman of the 2nd largest ward (Ijom) in Yakurr LGA. As at that time he was the youngest chairman of party in the whole of Yakurr and because he was generally accepted by his people, his ward produced the highest number of votes for the party in the 2015 general elections.

When you see a man of outstanding performances, there surely must be some outstanding qualities he pocesses.  For Bar Ikpi, the following are what has kept and moulded him to be the man he is today:

1. *His Humility:*Many who have related with him can attest to this, and his humility has indeed endeared him to many.

2. *His Articulate nature:* Bar Ikpi is a detailed man who will always insist on crossing the "t's" and dotting the "i's" no matter the cost he just believes what is worth doing is worth doing well.

3. *Passionate:* Many close to the Barr most times wonders what his driving force is because, his commitment to any thing he lays his hands on is second to none. And it has been discovered that the young barrister is full with passion and energy and this has been one of his major driving forces which is an advantage as he warms up to represent his people in the state house. 

4. *Unequivocal demonstration of Intelligence*displayed by the hopeful lawmaker is mind blowing as it has been his secret source of successes in his professional practice. 

 As a lawyer, I have no doubt in my mind that he will be a round peg in a round hole if given the opportunity to serve his people as a law maker in the state house of Assembly. The legislative processes will not be alien to him, thus his emergence will be one of the best things to have happened to the good people of Yakurr 1state constituency in recent times.

He is a youth who enjoys a wide followership and support base, following his style of politics where he carries everyone along.

In writing this piece, I had to carry out an independent survey and  I was shocked when majority of the respondent who where predominantly youths since they make up a large chunk of the voting strength all opted for Barr. Ikpi. Their response was that: *"Take everything and give us Barr Ikpi. We will support anybody that supports him because when we vote for them and they go, Barr. Ikpi is the only person that we are sure will still be around for us. He has a clear vision and we know he can deliver".*

As a legal practitioner, he has been of tremendous help to his people. Helping and financially supporting the organization of football competitions for the youth, helping in the payment of fees and other humanitarian activities. Rendering free legal services to his people etc. The youths are earnestly seeking for Barr Ikpi Ubana Eyong and are urging the leadership of his party in his constituency to give him the ticket and see the followership of youths that the party will enjoy.

*Ukorebi Esien* is a blogger who tells the Nigerian story one article at a time just the way it is without fear nor favour.