Akpabio’s Qualities,Historic Impacts for Human and Societal Growth
BY GLOBAL PEACE MOVEMENT INTERNATIONAL
If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you are a leader.
BY JOHN QUINCY ADAMS
It was for a reason that his tenure as Governor in Akwa Ibom State was termed ‘’ The Uncommon Transformation Years”.
For Akwa Ibom, Chief Godswill Obot Akpabio, CON, laid down the templates in governance, he changed the landscape and led his people to new heights of greater prominence.
The story of Senator Akpabio whose walk up the political ladder is a lesson in our political history of the gains in leadership and above all the lessons for leaders who hope to leave their footprint in the sand of history for hard work.
Leaders are known to combined vision with action. In today’s Nigeria, the failure of the leadership at all spheres has been the bane of our development.
Yet, in such a times, a few men stand out. A few have succeeded in writing their names in the sand of history.
For these few, they have inspired so many their actions. It is true that people around the world and every society always yearn for good leaders who have the desire and charisma to provide quality leadership for development.
In Nigeria, one of such key drivers of humans and societal development is Chief Godswill Obot Akpabio, CON, the current Minister of Niger Delta, a lawyer and politician, a former Senator and Senate’s Minority Leader.
Akpabio served as Governor of Akwa Ibom State from May 29, 2007, to May 29, 2015. He has been honoured with various awards because of his achievements and many political pundits describe him as a leader with a golden heart for change.
Sen. Akpabio is mostly admired and drawn to a lot of people because his hardwork and determination to succeed made himself unique in sphere of governance with his footsteps on a sands of memory.
Passionate for the future and the need for the youth to prepare ahead, Akpabio said, “Let the young ones who are graduating today go to the ends of the world with this conviction that the opinions of others should not be their reality. They can break new frontiers in knowledge and expand the boundaries of science. Let them strive to bring technology into service to make our nation proud.”
His charisma, vision and wisdom in politics and administrative leadership makes him stands tall among his contemporaries, and admired as an unfeigned source of inspiration to many in Nigeria, Africa and the word at large.
While piloting the affairs of Akwa Ibom State, Akpabio was distinguished for his extraordinary efforts being a popular, powerful, performing leader who makes things work for the masses. He effortlessly made remarkable achievements with numerous projects including laying down the process of state-own airlines business which is now in full operation. It’s rare to discover the office of a public figure, from Honourable Commissioner, Executive Governor, Senator, and Distinguished Minister.
Akpabio’s tenure as the Governor of Akwa Ibom State will remain a reference point in the dispensation of democratic politics in Nigeria.
Perhaps, one may recall that Akpabio’s footprints into governance began with his appointment as Commissioner Akpabio by his predecessor governor Victor Attah to head the Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources in Akwa Ibom State, to the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, to the Ministry of Lands and Housing where he resigned and won the election as governor.
Sen. Akpabio’s par excellence leadership qualities makes President Muhammadu Buhari appointed him minister of Niger Delta which automatically makes him a member of the federal executive council that takes decision for Nigeria.
His remarkable and stability in his political life, taking decisions and actions as situations demand, and being at the right place with the right people, at the right time is driven by his ideology.
He has silently mentored and inspired many youths, politicians and other people to greatness.
He has initiated programs that improved capacity development through manpower training in basic areas of needs, especially in agriculture through the integrated farmer’s scheme, designed to ensure food sufficiency.
Some of the key achievements in the areas of massive infrastructural development across the state include; first African e-library, international Olympic size stadium, first “IBOM” International Airport, a multi-billion West Africa’s Premium Trade Centre and Entertainment Scenario (The Tropicana), state of-the-art Banquet Hall with the latest technological wonders of the universe to promote tourism, with several minor achievements in accordance to the need of the people, like mini-water projects in all the Local Government Areas of the state to make life comfortable and over 87% of coverage of electricity linking more than 1500 communities to the national creed, thus surpassing both the national average of about 20% and the African record of less than 10% of electricity coverage.
Being the Minister of Niger Delta Ministry, Akpanio’s landmark record is built around self-confidence, self-worth, and sense of purpose, and took the decision after getting approval from President Buhari, directed a forensic audit of the Niger Delta Development Commission to unearth the frauds that were done by various heads of the sector which led to poor deployment in the oil producing region of the country.
Akpabio is one leader who has fully utilized the opportunity of serving his people to the best of his ability with all sincerity of purpose by working tirelessly, against all odds, to improve the quality of life of the present and future generation of people in the state, and across the nation as well as empower them into a peaceful, just and egalitarian society.
Before Senator Akpabio took over as the Minister of Niger Delta, NDDC was on a life support because of the huge debt owed the commission by International Oil Companies, IOCs, operating in the region.
The Niger Delta is a region that has contributed so much to the nation’s treasury but gets underdevelopment in return. The creation of the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs and the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, was a direct response to the series of agitations by the people of the Niger Delta flowing from the deep sense of exclusion, environmental degradation, lack of development, poverty and unemployment facing the region.
NDDC as an interventionist agency was meant to address the developmental challenges in the Niger Delta region but instead, the agency has allegedly enriched a few people while shortchanging the majority of the people of the Niger Delta.
Over the years, faceless contractors have pocketed the money for phantom projects that were never meant to be executed. To put it mildly, NDDC has been a cesspool of corruption and bad corporate governance.
This was why Senator Godswill Akpabio stood his ground for a forensic audit of the Commission and Nigerians were shocked at the revelations during and after the audit. Because of this act of bravery, Global Peace Movement International have named him the LION of NIGER-DELTA.
In almost 20 years after its establishment, the NDDC was operating from a rented headquarters building. The headquarters building started since the days of the Oil Mineral Producing Areas Development Commission, OMPADEC, the progenitor of NDDC, has remained uncompleted while the commission pays about N300 million as rent every year.
In no time, Akpabio was able to reposition the commission and within a short period of time, he was able to uncommonly transform the Niger Delta region. Today, NDDC is operating fully from it’s office in PortHarcourt.
As a man of peace and a man full of wisdom, Senator Akpabio who knows the importance of peace in the development of the Niger Delta region engaged all stakeholders in the region on the importance of peace. According to him, without peace there won’t be development.
Famously known as “The man who turned boys into men” during his tenure as governor of Akwa Ibom State, he has prioritised youth empowerment to achieve peace in the region.
As a man who believes in developing the youth, Senator Godswill Akpabio has empowered over 30,0000 youths with different skills through the youth empowerment programme of the Ministry. Because of his passion to develop the youths he secured the commitment of the Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, for strategic alliance for improved agricultural development and the provision of employment opportunities for the teeming youths of the Niger Delta.
Senator Akpabio as minister of Niger Delta Affairs envisages a peaceful and prosperous region with clusters of small and medium industries where the people are engaged to contribute to the development of the region.
As a man who believes in the unity of Nigeria, a group under the auspices of Senator Godswill Akpabio for Common Good (SGACG) has empowered thousands in Gombe State with a start-up fund.
The group, haven seen genuine and purposeful leadership has called on the Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Senator Godswill Akpabio, to contest for the office of President in 2023.
In a press conference, the group, put up an empowerment program to show commitment to Nigerians and garnering support for Senator Godswill Akpabio and persuading him to participate in the 2023 general elections.
The empowerment took place at the second Senator Akpabio Youth Empowerment Programme (SAYEP) in Gombe.
This is an ongoing assessment and will continue to be updated