The news of the expected defection of Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio to the APC appears to have put the camp of incumbent Governor Udom Emmanuel in panic mode. Aides and followers of the governor cannot understand why it seems Akpabio will abandon them on the red sea, at this critical time; perhaps they have forgotten politics is all about interest.


I have my incertitude about Senator Akpabio and his tenure as governor but one cannot discountenance the fact that he has a huge following within his senatorial district and the state. The man who at a time enjoyed such popularity within the same senatorial district is the late Dr Ime Umanah.


Assuming this rumor turns out true, can Governor Udom lead his team to victory? A lot of factors including where the APC governorship candidate comes from will determine that. The Oro nation believe it was their turn to produce a governor in 2015, if the APC should hearken to that demand the biggest test for Deacon will be winning his own backyard first of all.


Sometime last year I began using #AKSGFlops to point out to the governor and his team that he was performing below expectation, I was later joined by a couple of other well-meaning Akwa Ibomites/Nigerians who also expressed their reservations about the gear the government was driving in.


Obviously the governor was not prepared for a time like this. I remember telling a group of friends that when push comes to shove Senator Akpabio will negotiate for his senatorial seat and abandon the governor to his fate, after all any one in the know is aware that the relationship between both isn’t so smooth no more.


While I care less whether the senator decamps to APC or not, what I still cannot fathom is why Gov Udom has not been unable to carve a niche for himself after three years in office. To be a man of his own, and have Akwa Ibomites ready to go all the way for him, especially considering he attempted breaking free from the fangs of those who put him in office. Frankly from the day government house was invaded by men of the DSS, deacon Udom Emmanuel should have prepared for the inevitable. The desperation to have any possible South South state showed early enough – even from the Bayelsa election.


I wasn’t upbeat about his candidacy abinitio, however side by side with the APC candidate in 2015 he appeared to be a better option. One not few Akwa Ibom people believed will bring his level of exposure to bear on governance; perhaps we set the bar too high for him.


Maybe it is the team around him or maybe he just lost focus, whatever the situation, it is time for Deacon to produce his score card, let’s evaluate it side by side with his campaign promises. The days of motivational speeches are over, the days of media aides soliciting the help of Lagos & Abuja based persons to trend empty hashtags are ended. Now is the time to be accountable as to what has been done with the Paris Club Refund,the time is here for us to be told what projects belong to individuals, the state and which are PPP. The day is here for us to know what happened to the various sites where ‘ground was broken’, why haven’t these industries taken off till date? It isn’t even too late for us to know the debt profile of Akwa Ibom state and who borrowed what, nor is it too late to see those AKEES spent the billions budgeted for on.


If Senator Akpabio and his team eventually do not decamp, the message is clear to Akwa Ibomites that Deacon is hoping to build his house on another’s foundation, when he had ample time to lay his own. If team Akpabio go ahead to decamp, Deacon will be left to campaign on the strength of his achievements alone. Will that see him through? Time will tell!


In the next couple of months, it behoves on Deacon to go ahead and tidy up whatever projects are there and most importantly reorganize his team to point out those things to the rest of us. The days of endorsements and dancing with brass bands are OVER.


As 2019 draws closer one candidate is already known, as more emerge Akwa Ibomites will eventually decide which direction to take based on available facts. Will these 3 years(plus) be to Udom’s advantage or it will count against him? Could he I done better? I believe so. Will his stay at the hilltop mansion extend beyond 2019? We wait and see!




The writer is on twitter @EnenimUbon

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Posted on: August 5, 2018, by :

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