Message to Akwa Ibom from former Governor Godswill Akpabio, minority leader of the Nigerian senate, aired on Atlantic 104.5fm, Uyo on Sunday, 24th Jan. 2016.
When Dr. Goodluck Ebele Jonathan came to Akwa Ibom State last year for his Presidential campaign, he honestly confessed and asking for forgiveness, went ahead to plead that, although the PDP controlled federal government he led did nothing to advance the economic wellbeing and infrastructural development of the state for the 6 years he has been on the saddle as President and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, Akwa Ibom people should please vote for him and his PDP in the presidential election for another four years. And for what reason? Dr. Goodluck Ebele Azikiwe Jonathan is from Bayelsa State in our South South geopolitical zone.
At that presidential campaign rally in Uyo, Mr. Godswill Obot Akpabio, the governor and civilian sole administrator of the state, openly declared and assured President Jonathan that his abysmal performance notwithstanding, the PDP will get 100 percent of all the Akwa Ibom votes in the presidential election. On March 28, 2015, Akpabio’s controlled PDP unleashed a well armed militia of thugs and gangsters that terrorised the Akwa Ibom electorate, maiming bodies, breaking bones and outrightly slaughtering many of our promising youths in cold blood; all in the effort of redeeming the promise of returning 100 percent of votes cast in the State for President Jonathan and the PDP.
Against this background, I respectfully invite you to critically peruse the following. It is a prerecorded messenger from the now called Senator Godswill Akpabio that was aired on Atlantic Radio FM 104.5, Uyo, on Sunday, 24th Jan. 2016. In my humble opinion, it gives a true picture of the character of the man Godswill Obot Akpabio.
“We have heard of people who claim they’re defecting from one party to the other in the state, i understand that politics is dynamic, so people can always reverse decisions. But politics demand consistency and loyalty, so I remain loyal to my party, I remain consistent. Now there’s a new technology in the country, it was propounded by the governor of Ekiti state, which they call stomach infrastructure. What that means is that when the politician thinks that power is moving to a different sector, the person tries to move along with it because of stomach infrastructure.
The stomach infrastructure politicians have no principles, they will always try to move and dance with the time and those people have no ideologies and all that, so, you can’t stop such people. In Akwa ibom, we’ve not had any defection, the PDP in Akwa Ibom State is still very intact. The people they write in the newspapers and say they’re defecting are people who have been members of the APC and they are very few. The funny part of it is that I saw in about two pages of a newspaper the other day where they wrote the names of people who have always been there and they claim that those people are now defecting.
Look at the list, you’ll see all of them. How can a chairman of APC be defecting? How can the deputy governorship candidate of the APC be defecting? And they’re in a hurry to add acronyms to their names, that’s why you’ll see them writing names like Winmos, and say ‘former deputy speaker is defecting’, how can he be defecting when he has always been there? They even wrote names of people who contested the Senate and House of Reps. How can you write names of people who lost elections to state House of Assembly as defecting? How can they be defecting when they’ve always been members.
So, it’s all a question of propaganda, they are attempting to deceive the people that there is mass movement from the PDP when there’s no such thing. PDP is intact and Akwa Ibom is one hundred percent PDP and I’ve always stressed that in eight years of my governance of the state and in eight years of Obong Victor Attah’s governance of the state, in sixteen years, we have never seen the federal government’s presence in Akwa Ibom except police and soldiers, it’s a very simple truth. So, in other words, Akwa ibom is not in opposition. The state government is PDP and it belongs to us. It is PDP that has achieved all that we have achieved in the state from 1999 to 2016, not the federal government. Even the gas processing plant that I pioneered in Esit Eket which is giving a lot of employment opportunities to our children. That was done under the PDP administration and not the federal government. We went as far as doing 59kilometres of gas pipeline from Esit Eket all the way to Ibom power plant so that we can supply gas and turn to turbines and give light our the people.
It wasn’t done by the federal government, the Le-Meridian hotel was not done by the federal government, the flyovers you see in the state were not done by the federal government. The airport projects in many states of the federation were not done by the federal government. In fact, in a place like Imo, where the people initially contributed money to commence an airport but their money was refund to them. But in the case of Akwa Ibom, it’s different, Akwa Ibom had to build its own airport. So, we must take the destiny of our state in our hands. That’s why today we have an airport we can be proud of, we can take off from there and and there, that is PDP administration.
So, people who are attempting to talk about change, is it change in the right direction or wrong direction? In Akwa Ibom state, the change is already there. Of course as you can see, right now the governor is taking the Infrastructural development that you see in uyo to urbanization od rural areas and new city development plan. He Is taking it to Eket and will extend it to Oron. So, when you come into Akwa Ibom, at a glance, you’ll notice that the entirety of the state has changed.
The federal government tries to do little, is it up to 10kilometres of road between Ibeno and Eket? and it’s been ground work for the past 16years. The federal government till now for 16years has not been able to finish the east-west road. Now, it’s impossible for us to enter Port Harcourt. So, when people are struggling to change party and run to join the party in the center, what are you going to gain in the center? Wether it is APC or PDP or NDP, every state must have a minister, that’s all you get. In sixteen years, that’s all we had! The only person who tried to give us something a little bit better was President Obasanjo who gave us the position of secretary to government under Ufot Ekaette and I don’t know how we faired. Then, of course, we also had our normal minister.
In this dispensation, we’re very privileged to have a normal minister that we should have and thank God he is a person who is what I may say ‘a square peck in a square hole. Not only is he intelligent, a chief of the whole block and somebody who has the interest of Nigeria and the state at heart and that’s Sen. Udo Udoma, so we got what we should get from federal government.
The other aspect of senior special assistant, I just spoke with him a few minutes ago when he (Sen. Ita Enang) called to thank me that despite the mistake in the senate, that i insisted that position should not leave Akwa Ibom. this is because as a leader, I must ensure that I protect my people and any single job that is given to an Akwa ibom child, I must protect that job so that our people will not be jobless. So, we are not in opposition. As soon as economic situation improve, governor Udom Emmanuel will shock everybody with development and we’re gonna bring industries to Akwa Ibom state and that’s the PDP administration. I thank the good people of Akwa Ibom state, nobody is defecting to APC. The people who they claim are defecting are the people who have always been in APC, that’s the simple truth. So please, go through it again and you’ll see that list of people who contested elections under the APC platform are the same people defecting.
How can you be defecting in a political that you had ticket, contested and lost in 2015 and come to tell me you’re defecting? So, that’s propaganda. And I always tell people that propaganda can last for a moment but the truth lasts forever. We used to have a man called Okokon Ndem in those days of the Biafran civil war, beating the drums and saying “you can listen, the gallant Biafrans meeting from Benin, they have reached Ore, they are about capturing Lagos” and by the time he’s talking, he himself is preparing to run from Onitsha towards Aba because they have already captured Onitsha. But he will be telling people “ooh, the gallant Biafrans have captured Edo, they’re on their way to Ore, they’re almost capturing Lagos and by the time they’re capturing Lagos, Enugu are coming, they’re capturing Lagos, Umuahia are coming”.
So, i’m not interested in politics of deceit and politics of propaganda.
I thank the good people of Akwa Ibom for standing by the government of Governor Udom Emmanuel. They don’t see me much in the state because I have a lot of responsibilities in the center as principal officer of the Senate, because am the Senate minority leader, so, I have a lot of things to do to assist Nigeria. But I will always be there to give my advice when it is needed and I’ll always love my people and whenever am doing anything here, the interest of every Akwa Ibom child remains paramount.
I thank God that sometimes I stop my car on the road in Abuja and call somebody to bring me newspaper and I’ll speak my language and the person doesn’t understand. So, in eight years of our administration, the days are gone when the children of Akwa ibom were allover Abuja and Lagos selling newspapers, you’ll see people riding okadas and all that. With the free and compulsory education that we embarked upon more than eight years ago, our children are now educated and are now trying to find their way.
I know that with God by your side, because we’re the state that prays for Nigeria, the only state that grabs God, the only state that broke the Guinness book of world record; singing together for God Almighty, God cannot forget the ministration of praising done Him by Akwa Ibom people and God will bless Akwa ibom children wherever they are. To finish it that Akwa Ibom children are no longer regarded as fetching wood and all of that. You’ll go into a place, they make you a leader, you’ll walk into a place and they say your state is doing well, we thank God.
So, let us support the government of Udom Gabriel Emmanuel and ignore the propagandists who are thinking that there’s going to be a re-run and even if there’s a re-run election for five times, you know the result will be ‘Udom Gabriel Emmanuel’ five times.
So, know that the people of Akwa Ibom must pray for the president and pray for the governor. Why am saying that is because we’re enjoined to pray for our leaders, irrespective of political party. Because when a president comes in, he becomes president of all, not a president of a political party. So, president Buhari belongs to Nigeria as president of the nation. So, as we pray in the state because we’re a praying state, lets also pray that God will give him the wisdom to succeed so that Nigeria will be better. But in Akwa Ibom state, we must also pray for our Governor, Udom Emmanuel who is already doing well and showing strides and showing clearly that he’s focussed and that with distractions over, the state will reach its eldorado.
Also, i ask for patience, especially from civil servants, that today the economy is bad because of the oil price that has dwindled all the way bellow 30dollars. It’s not easy for the country, it’s not easy for any state in the federation. So, you must be patient with your governor and know that the good days will soon come, with prayers.
Thank you all, I love you all!”
(_His Excellency, Sen. Godswill Obot Akpabio).