By Osondu Ahirika, Uyo
Head of the National Media for the Maintain Peace Movement and Umo Eno Campaigns, Mr. Anietie Usen has described the alleged certificate forgery against Pastor Umo Eno, the PDP governorship candidate in Akwa Ibom State as “a dirty smear job, a utopian miscalculation and a political gimmick taken too far’ by a political opponent.
Usen who is a multiple Award winning Investigative Journalist and author of the bestseller books, AUDACIOUS JOURNALISM and VILLAGE BOY, said this during a LIVE Radio interview programme on Inspiration FM, Uyo.
He said he is not only speaking as someone who is working in the campaign organisation of Pastor Umo Eno but as a trusted journalist who has done his findings recently and concluded that Eno is ‘as clean as a needle’.
He described the allegation not only as ‘unfair and unkind’, but the handiwork of someone who is acutely desperate to gain unfair advantage and bring down his opponent by all means. Fortunately for Umo Eno, the respected journalist said, the accuser did not do his homework well before rushing to the public to defame his colleague’s character.
“The good news for me and all of us in Umo Eno team is that the burden and responsibility of proof is heavily on this gentleman accuser and I can assure Akwa people worldwide that there is absolutely no forgery to prove against Pastor Umo Eno”.
According to Usen, the alleged certificate forgery “is a product of political daydreaming by someone who got only three votes at the PDP governorship primaries and may have been deceived by some false prophets that three votes will overturn 993 votes won by Umo Eno in a transparent and very peaceful nomination exercise.
“What I want to emphasise which the public must note is that the calculations of this politician-accuser is that if Pastor Umo Eno is eliminated from the race, he the accuser would coast home as the governorship candidate, since his three votes placed him second in that nomination race. In other words, this accusation is not made by a neutral person or in good faith, but by a fairytale opponent who seeks to overcome his opponent by foul play”.
Faulting the allegation further, Usen said most people are only relying on beer parlour gossip and social media politicians, without seeking for verification. “In my own case, I, Anietie Usen, went to Pastor Umo Eno, sat with with him one-on-one and said to him Sir, I want to see your certificates, and he laughed and wasted no time in showing me his certificate”.
He recalled that “the allegation was first made by the same accuser and his brother in a petition to the PDP national headquarters in Abuja. The PDP at the National Level took the allegation seriously, investigated it and exonerated Pastor Umo Eno before he was issued a certificate of return.
He said, “now, tell me Sam, if you were going to forge a certificate, would you forge the one that gives you only two credit passes”, Usen asked his interviewer, adding “can two credits afford you a university admission or a good job…or if you were going to forge a birth certificate, would you forge the birth certificate that keeps you at the same age…
“Of all the places Pastor eno worked beginning from his first job in the bank to the sensitive positions of Executive Director and Commissioner in Akwa Ibom cabinet, nobody accused him of forgery…Of all the schools he attended including a doctorate programme in the University, none spotted a forge GCE certificate with two credit passes…
How then can a defeated politician and opponent tell any sensible person that he has suddenly hit this ‘jackpot’ that would replace the landslide winner of the race. Akwa Ibom people must pardon this politician and see his accusations simply as ‘dirty politics taken too far…Trust me, Pastor Umo Eno has absolutely no iota of problem with his WAEC certificate”.
Speaking on the MPM, Usen said the organisation was established by Governor Udom Emmanuel as a novel machinery to crusade for peace and ensure that Akwa Ibom State remains a peaceful and pleasant oasis in the midst of prevalent security challenges in the country. The fact that Akwa Ibom State is known as one of the safest places in Nigeria today, according to him, testifies to the success of MPM.