Hon. Usen John Akpan, the councilor representing Etim Ekpo Ward II in Akwa Ibom State has lost his seat for defecting from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to the All Progressives Congress, APC, over the weekend.
The councilor is from the country home of former Senate Minority Leader, Chief Godswill Akpabio.
It was gathered that the councilor’s action provoked the ward chairman of Etim Ekpo Ward II Mr. Aniekan Linus Umoh who on behalf of the party petitioned Etim Ekpo Legislature, prompting an emergency sitting of the House yesterday.
The remaining nine lawmakers, during their sitting, declared the seat of Hon. Usen John Akpan vacant, citing section 32 (I) (g) of the Local Government (Administration) Law of Akwa Ibom State CAP 80 as Amended.
The leader of Etim Ekpo Legislative council Hon. Ifiok Amos explained that the extant law made it mandatory that “A member of a council shall vacate his seat in the council if being a person whose election to the council was sponsored by a political party, he becomes a member of another political party before expiration of the period for which the council was elected.”
According to him; “By the virtue of the Power conferred on me and in pursuant of the law, the legislative council hereby declare the seat of Hon. Usen John Akpan, councilor Ward II Etim Ekpo vacant.”
The councilors urged the Akwa Ibom State Independent Electoral Commission (AKISIEC) to immediately conduct a bye election in the area within the time specified by law to fill the vacant seat.