Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom State on Saturday met with some youth leaders from the 31 local government areas of the state and allegedly doled out the sum of N155 million to them.
The meeting, which held at the Hilltop Mansion Government House, Uyo, was aimed at securing the youth’s loyalty for the Peoples Democratic Party governorship candidate, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, in the forthcoming general elections.
One of the youth leaders, who spoke to SUNDAY PUNCH on the condition of anonymity at the Government House, said that N155m earmarked for the occasion, was for the ‘empowerment’ of the youths.
He stated that each of the youth leaders from the 31 local government areas went home with N5m each.
One of the beneficiaries, who also sought anonymity, disclosed that the purpose of the meeting was how to convince the local government youth leaders to support the PDP in the forthcoming polls.
“The meeting was about us supporting the government in this election. There is nothing more. I don’t see anything wrong if the governor decides to empower us. He has really tried. The event was not secret; it was transmitted live from Akwa Ibom State Broadcasting Corporation”, he said.
Meanwhile, it was learnt that some of the youth, who did not receive invitation to the event but managed to find their way into the Banquet Hall where the money was shared, got N50, 000 each.
One of the youths, Mr. Uko Effing, said apart from the leaders who were invited, provisions were also made for other youths that gate crashed into the venue of the event.
As of the time of publishing this report, there has been no official response from the state government.