From Joe Effiong, Uyo
The Akwa Ibom State Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Obong Udo Ekpenyong, is dead, a source tells Daily Sun.
Ekpenyong, the first PDP state chairman from Ikot Ekpene senatorial district, is said to have died at 4 am Tuesday of health complications associated with COVID-19 which has wreaked havoc in the state, sweeping away many prominent persons, including the former military governor of the state, Commodore Idongesit Nkanga (retd).
A source in the party who confirmed the story on the condition of anonymity pleaded for time for the bereaved family to come to terms with the untimely loss.
Ekpenyong, the former Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs in the state, was elected state chairman of the PDP on July 30, 2020, at the state congress held at Godswill Akpabio Stadium, Uyo, which the former Deputy Governor of Abia State, Mr Eric Nwakama, supervised.
His death brings to three the number of PDP state chairmen who have died since the party formally inaugurated in the state in 1999. The others are Chief Joe Ating and Chief Tony Emenyi.
His death also occurred barely three months after the state chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Mr Ini Okopido, also died.
The state chairmanship of both the PDP and APC in Akwa Ibom would be held in an acting capacity by their deputy chairmen.
Daily Sun has also learned that many high profile citizens of the state, many of them PDP chieftains, serving and past commissioners, have been hit by the pandemic and are being held at state isolation centres.
The Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr Ini Ememobong, while admonishing people at the NUJ annual thanksgiving on Sunday in Ikot Abasi to take COVID-19 precautionary measures, regretted that the pandemic had seriously hit with the state, with the deaths of high net worth individuals.