“No, no, no. I don’t have any issue with the current Governor of Akwa Ibom State,
His Excellency Udom Gabriel Emmanuel. He remains my Governor, and a godfather to my
children. I don’t have any issue with him. If there are local issues, these are
things we can sit down on the table and resolve.”
Godswill Akpabio, former Minority Leader of the Senate, has denied reports his
relationship with Emmanuel Udom, Governor of Akwa Ibom State, is strained.
Emmanuel was largely unknown in political circles until 2013, when he was appointed
Secretary to the State Government (SSG) by Akpabio. With Akpabio’s support, Udom
went on to become Governor of the state two years later.
Akpabio was a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Governor at the time but he has
formally defected to the All Progressives Congress (APC) — a move predated by
rumours that he and his protégé had strained their relationship.
As Akpabio Plots Exit, PDP Announces ‘Mega Endorsement Rally’ For Udom Emmanuel.
But when asked on Channels TV’s Politics Today if this was true, following his
defection, Akpabio said: “No, no, no. I don’t have any issue with the current
Governor of Akwa Ibom State, His Excellency Udom Gabriel Emmanuel. He remains my
Governor, and a godfather to my children. I don’t have any issue with him.
“If there are local issues, these are things we can sit down on the table and
resolve. And, for me, I think of the national interest. I believe strongly that with
the challenges we’re having now, all hands should be on deck.
￼“So many people are being killed in Plateau, so many are being killed in Benue, so
many are being killed in Taraba, so many in Taraba, Boko Haram has not abated,
herdsmen clashing with farmers, South-East we have the IPOB, South-South militants
are still not totally satisfied… We have challenges all over the country.”
Asked if it was true he was nursing the ambition of becoming Senate President, he
said: “I don’t have any intention of becoming Senate President today. But I have
every intention of becoming whatever God wants me to become.
“My name is Godswill, and I believe in the will of God. I believe so much more in
the will of God more than the will of man.”