is Excellency, Governor Udom Gabriel Emmanuel’s administration and leadership in Akwa-Ibom State will always remain indelible and symbolic. The rigorous and continuous developmental strides speak volumes of a messiah we have long been expecting to inject life and usher in a new dispensation in our socio-political landscape.
The saying, “some are born great, some achieve greatness and some have greatness thrust upon them” is a famous line from ‘Twelfth Night’ by William Shakespeare, whose literal meaning encapsulates the personality of Governor Udom, embedded in his DAKKADA philosophy. It is commonly believed that some individuals are born with innate traits and abilities that lead to significant and admirable accomplishments, others learn to enhance their abilities that lead to significant and admirable achievements, and yet, others are in the right place, at the right time and manage to do the right thing which leads to significant and admirable attainments.
Like William Shakespeare, and back at home, Wole Soyinka, the 1986 awardee of Nobel Prize in Literature, the first African to be honoured in that category, Governor Udom Emmanuel falls into the category of those who achieve greatness by result of their efforts and/or talent. There are other examples of Presidents and Political leaders in this category. Although they might have displayed a particular talent at an early stage or had a genetic advantage, their greatness would not have been evident but for dint of hard work. This is a lesson for our generation and for posterity.
Governor Udom’s performances and leadership have not only impressed Akwa-Ibom people but also people beyond. Little wonder that his victory at the polls was celebrated in Lagos and elsewhere, even among those who for once have never stepped their feet on the soil of Akwa-Ibom State. Alhaji Gbadamosi Sanusi, a Lagos based industrialist and a staunch member of the ruling party in Lagos had this to say, “I love this your Governor, whenever I watch him on Television and listen to his comments, I conclude that he is a complete gentleman, he will never pass bad comments on his opponents, this is the kind of leader we need in Nigeria”.
Indeed, leadership that is enlightened, educative, and innovative enough to create wealth and build sustainable systems that will guarantee a better life for all Akwa-Ibomites. The stunning programmes that consistently and brilliantly manifests are proofs of his forensic skills, the unparalled wit, and the telling phrase that make people see things in a way they had not seen them before. A masterly feat that brings opponents to their knees and sometimes even to their senses. There is constancy in his deeply-held belief, encapsulated in the DAKKADA CREED – destiny for greatness, which stabilizes his poise amidst times of turmoil and turbulence, amidst the inevitable ups and downs, the tensions and exigencies of politics.
As Governor Udom now gallantly in his last tenure in office, we can see a “Dubai” in Akwa-Ibom state as we approach the expiration of his administration. It is always thrilling to reflect on how Dubai, once a desert land, has been transformed into a global city. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Ruler of the Emirate of Dubai since his accession in 2006 has undertaken tremendous reforms – Dubai Internet City, Dubai Media City, the Palm Islands, Burj Al Arab Hotel and Burj Khaila, the tallest building in the world, among others. Dubai, whose oil deposit is expected to run out in 2029, discovered oil in 1966 and had utilized the oil revenue judiciously to stabilize their economy. Despite the international turmoil over the cost of oil, Dubai is already considered as the ‘Hong Kong’ of the Middle East and would survive in a new oil-free world because it has established itself as a major trading hub.
Governor Udom expectedly will bring down ‘Dubai’ into Akwa-Ibom State. His lifelong deeply held passionate commitment to socio-political and economic justice and emancipation of Akwa-Ibom State leaves no one in doubt as we swim and wallow in the euphoria of optimism for a new dawn.