Akpabio Defends Controversial Wedding Gifts To Tuface
The Governor of Akwa Ibom, Dr. Godswill Akpabio has defended his controversial wedding gifts to Tuface Idibia and his wife, saying the gifts were “only a gesture of love and goodwill” to commend the wife for standing by her husband from his days of humble beginnings.
The governor, who hosted a lavish traditional engagement ceremony for the celebrity couple in Eket, was reported to have declared a gift of two brand new Toyota Prado SUVs for the couple and also vowed to sponsor 29 people to their forthcoming nuptial in Dubai.
The state’s Commissioner for Information, Aniekan Umana, on Thursday, confirmed to Channels Television via a phone conversation that the state governor decided to “assist Annie Idibia so that her family members and close friends who are citizens of Akwa Ibom, who cannot afford the trip will be with her on her wedding day.”
According to the Commissioner, “if anything the Governor should be encouraged because the galaxy of stars and people that Annie and Tuface’s wedding brought to Akwa Ibom state is good for the state’s economy and this could never have happened even with an advertisement of N3million”, making reference to the sum of money the government is expending on the return tickets for Annie’s friends and family to Dubai.
“I wonder why they (mischief makers) like taking on Governor Akpabio. Is it because he is a nice man” Mr Umana asked.
A statement by the Commissioner on Wednesday stated that the Governor only approved a car, and not two, for the couple.
He also said he only promised to sponsor 20, and not 29, wedding guests to Dubai for the couple’s white wedding.
The statement explained that state government is “only sponsoring the travel expenses of twenty of her family members at an estimated cost of roughly Three Million Naira (N3,000,000.00) only.”
The statement reads as follows: “following spurious and false speculations in the social media concerning the wedding gift by Governor Godswill Akpabio to Mrs. Annie Innocent Idibia, née Macaulay, I wish to state as follows:
“That the Governor of Akwa Ibom State Chief Godswill Akpabio, donated ONE Prado jeep to Mrs. Annie Innocent Idibia, nee Macaulay a daughter of Akwa Ibom State and renowned artist during her traditional marriage at Eket.”
“That the State Governor as a token of support for the couple promised to fund the traveling expenses (economy return tickets) for ONLY TWENTY relatives of Mrs. Annie Idibia Macaulay to Dubai, where the couple have chosen to wed.”
Standing By Her Man
Explaining what warrants the gift to Mrs Idibia, the statement claimed that Mrs Idibia exhibited the true attribute of the Akwa Ibom women by staying with her husband from his days of humble beginnings till his global stardom despite the series of controversies that trailed their relationship.
“That looking carefully at the surrounding events in perspective, Mrs. Annie Idibia, nee Macaulay is a daughter of Akwa Ibom State and the gift of a Prado SUV from her governor is only a gesture of love and goodwill” the statement read.
“Her resolve to stand by her husband on his journey right from his days of youthful beginnings to stardom even in the face of challenges was commendable and a true attribute of the Akwa Ibom women.”
The governor blamed mischief makers and enemies of progress for inflaming the social media with incongruous reports that the State Government is sponsoring an entourage of party supporters to the wedding in Dubai.
Mr. Umana therefore urged members of the public to “discountenance the misrepresentations made out of a well-intentioned act of the governor.”
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