When you go to Akwa Ibom of Gov. Emmanuel’s leadership complexion, you will wish it was your own state for innumerable reasons.
Last week, I watched a video clip where the former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Senator Godswill Akpabio, profusely endorsed his successor, Governor Udom Emmanuel, amid pomp and circumstance, revelry and gaiety.
After viewing the ecstatic event that saw Akpabio dancing and raising his successor’s hand in public confirmation of his candidacy, I am surprised that he does not now want him reelected.
Gov. Emmanuel symbolizes growth and development. Because of space constraint, a few testamentary revolutions will suffice: dualization of Eket-Ibeno Road and Mkpok Okat Road; reconstruction of Ikot Udom Road, Idiaba-Nda Nsit-Ikot Abasi (Nung Udoe) Road, Ikot Usop-Ikot Ede- ghe-Ikot Ekpuk Road and internal roads in Akwa Ibom State University, Obio Akpa.
Please digest this incontrovertible ex- tract: “In less than four years, Udom Emmanuel’s administration has touched the lives of Akwa Ibomites in many different ways. Massive investments in infrastructure —including the construction of 40 bridges and over 1,700km of roads — are giving our communities access to new opportunities.” This transformative paradigm hinged on superlative antecedents has already guaranteed Gov. Emmanuel an irrevocable second-term divine mandate. No self-preserving defector or turn-coat can stop it!
I stand with Gov. Emmanuel for being calm and taciturn in the face of reckless insinuations and provocative statements from his predecessor in office. The following paragraphs, aforementioned and evidential accomplishments justify my standpoint. With Gov. Emmanuel, there is no personalization of governance.
His apostles, subordinates and virtually all Ibomites fondly call him ‘Mr. Integrity’. It is not for fun. They do it with all sense of responsibility and etymological consciousness. This was long before the recent meritorious award bestowed on him by the foremost television network in the country.
Our country has been so monetized that once you do a laudatory article about someone or a corporate citizen, you must either have collected money or have an anticipatory inclination. On the other hand, if you criticize, you are called a detractor sent by opponents or competition to calumniate victims—also for a bloody fee! It is a no-win dilemma. Perhaps, the best option is to shirk one’s civic and professional responsibility and sit on the fence!
What is it that informed my declaration about this man’s uprightness last year? His widely-acclaimed relationship with God, compassion, spiritual steadfastness, his manifest eschatological beliefs and the fact that he rose to the level of an executive director in a bank from where he moved on to become the Executive Governor of Akwa Ibom State. Having worked in two banks at managerial levels, I know what it takes to attain that height in the corporate firmament.
It is germane to note that national institutions are beginning to appreciate Mr. Integrity’s invaluable contributions to the human development index and pacesetting infrastructural renewal in Akwa Ibom State. From what is on ground, there is the likelihood of the delivery of more democracy value chains for his people. That, to me, is the minimum expectation.
This youthful governor seems to have innate potentialities to surpass the marginal and Uyo-exclusive achievements of his predecessor. The way he is going about good governance, best practices and holistic developments of his state holds a profundity of hope for further re-engineering of this South South paradise on earth!
Today, I do not know which other state in this country is better than Akwa Ibom in terms of multi-faceted developmental transformations, specification of critical projects and institutionalization of unprecedented templates of leadership and commitment to the service of humanity, especially Akwa Ibomites.
The whole of Akwa Ibom is like a construction territory — one thing or another that will benefit even generations unborn is up here and there. Perhaps, it is only Abuja that can equal, not surpass, Akwa Ibom in terms of social infrastructure.
‘Mr. Integrity’ is focused on unrivaled urban renewal of the entire state. When you are busy and affecting the lives of people positively and changing transformation architecture and overall growth and development narrative in splendorous visages, there would be no time for demonization of predecessors, criminalization of oppositional forces, witch hunt, inanities and character assassination through vituperative comments networked on the social media and other gossip platforms via obstreperous media aides, among other depravities, as are blueprints for governance in most states!
When you go to Akwa Ibom of Gov. Emmanuel’s leadership complexion, you will wish it was your own state for innumerable reasons. You feel like staying back and forgetting wherever you came from. The magnitude of transformation in Akwa Ibom cannot be captured in this whole newspaper, let alone this half-page column. You need to see things for yourself: they are indescribable — no documentary, supplement publication, proxy, delegation or second-hand source can tell a quarter of the structural marvels, human capacity development initiatives, and redefinition of governance from what we are used to in other parts of the country, particularly South East.
Space constraint will not allow me to catalogue some of the referential points of Mr. Integrity’s illimitable quintessence in Akwa Ibom. You need to be there and see for yourself the meaning and physicality of governance. I can testify, to the glory of God and joy of mankind, to the numerous wonders of the world here that are truly ordained—not a function of gobbledygook, mass deception and concomitant aggrandizement via onshore and offshore obscene wealth acquisition!
The amazing thing is the panache with which this reverend-governor touches his people’s lives. If you visit Akwa Ibom by road from Umuahia or Aba and return without weeping for Abia State, my decrepit state, it is either you are stone-hearted or suffering from cerebral palsy or both! Such heartlessness will not allow you to feel the fresh air of inimitable transformations in Akwa Ibom, to witness the meaning of leadership, to comprehend the reality of legacies and futurism in governance having virtually conquered today’s challenges and needs. I call it anticipatory governance after immediate accomplishments and totality of achievements.
God will continue to prosper and navigate the trajectory of this compassionate governor, a fellow Great Akokite. How I wish serving and prospective state chief executives could borrow a leaf from ‘Mr. Integrity’. May his light never dim now and even after his two-tenure tour of duty.