By Ime Silas

Amidst fears of the spread of Corona Virus, popularly called Covid-19, the Akwa Ibom state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, is set to hold it’s state Congress.

Gov Udom (second from left) with some PDP faithful

It could be recalled that as measures to prevent the spread of the virus, countries of the world, including Nigeria, have announced ban on large gatherings.

In a recent broadcast to the people of the state on the heels of the epidemic, the governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, had told residents to go about their normal businesses. Udom Emmanuel is the leader of the PDP in the state.

Announcing the congress in a statement today, the PDP state chairman, Mr. Paul Ekpo, said it would hold on Tuesday, March 24, 2020 at the Godswill Akpabio International Stadium. The stadium has sitting capacity of about thirty thousand.

The statement reads: “Notice is hereby given that the State Congress earlier scheduled to hold on April 4,2020 will now hold on Tuesday March 24,2020 at the Nest Of Champions(GOA stadium) by 10am. This shift, according to the National Working Committee of the Party, is necessitated by supervening circumstances.

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“It is important to note that the voting delegates for the congress from the ward and chapter levels will be the outgoing members of Executive Committees not the newly elected officials, due to the subsistence of the their tenure, which will lapse by April 30, 2020.

“Take further notice that, due to the prevailing global health situation, the congress will not welcome people outside the delegates, statutory observers, press and security. All delegates will compulsorily be subjected to tests, personal hygiene routine and social distancing.

“In preparation for the congress, the Screening Committee has screened and approved the names of aspirants, who purchased nomination forms and submitted themselves to be screened for the various offices(see attachment herein)”.

The Congress is expected to have no fewer than five thousand contingents including delegates, stalwarts, security personnel, INEC officials, observers, etc, some of whom are expected to come from outside the state.