Godswill Akpabio, minister of Niger Delta affairs, has pulled out of the Akwa Ibom north-west senatorial re-run election scheduled for January.
Akpabio made his decision known in a letter addressed to Adams Oshiomhole, national chairman of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
In the letter dated December 2, Akpabio said as a minister, a huge responsibility had been placed on him.
He said he could not “abandon a critical assignment” placed on him by President Muhammadu Buhari in pursuit of a re-run election.
He urged the party to write the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in line with Sections 33 and 35 of the Electoral Act, 2010, and submit a replacement to run in his place.
Chris Ekpeyong of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had defeated Akpabio in the February election but the former minority leader of the senate headed to the court to challenge his opponent’s victory.
He had taken oath office as a minister when the court of appeal ordered a rerun election in Essien Udim local government area where Akpabio hails from.