HOW WILL HISTORY REMEMBER UDOM EMMANUEL?
By Ima Nkanta
“Be a thoughtful, caring, and transparent leader on a daily basis, and that is how you will be remembered.” Allan Walker
As Deacon Udom Emmanuel leaves office as Governor of Akwa Ibom State, the question in my mind is: ‘How will history remember Udom Emmanuel?
As a keen observer of his administration, I have seen in Udom Emmanuel an unusual interest and commitment towards making Akwa Ibom State far better than he met it eight years ago. He has achieved exponential success in many fronts. I must commend him for his creativity and focus.
In life, success attracts more criticisms than failure. This is why discordant voices of vitriolic critics became more deafening in this administration. Of course his firmness and commitment to a cause was unmoved – like Paul the apostle said, ‘none of these things moved me.’
He will be remembered as a gentleman who genuinely tried to shift the archaic retrogressive narrative of ‘Give, give’ attitude of our people – like the horse leaches whose daughters yell, “Give, give” and are never satisfied, never said, “it is enough,” Proverbs 30:15 (KJV).
The Dakkada philosophy, a well thought out policy to transition the people from pedestrian attitude to a productivity-driven people for economic sustenance was well articulated. Hundreds of youths who bought into the Dakkada dream have benefitted immensely. Today, Dakkada drive has repositioned thousands of others to be more enterprise and innovative focused. In eight years, Udom Emmanuel has quietly caused entrepreneurial revolution – beneficiaries are also impacting their worlds; unsung.
History will remember Udom Emmanuel as the man who put planes with Akwa Ibom logo in the air. The Ibom Air phenomenon took the entire nation by storm. This trailblazing aviation success has remained a pride of every Akwa Ibomite within and without the state.
Udom Emmanuel administration has built more road networks in the state than any past administration. The Udom Emmanuel’s administration has paid civil servants to date and none has denied it, yet none has applauded him in a country where some outgoing governors still owe months of salary arrears.
History will remember Udom Emmanuel as the one who activated the industrialization yearnings of the state. History will not forget him as a man of peace. He came at a time the state was bleeding because of the blood of innocent citizens mowed down. At the time, politically motivated violence thrived, people lived in fear. Then you cannot criticize a governor and go home to sleep, as his boys like wild beasts would follow your trail to silence you.
But Udom Emmanuel courageously disbanded the murderous squads, obliterating their existence with legislation.
He will be remembered for peace.”And if the son of peace be there, your peace shall rest upon it:” Luke 10:6 (KJV)
History will remember him as a quiet achiever. Udom Emmanuel administration features surpassing achievements in road infrastructure, health, education, security, aviation, job creation, human capital development, environment and flood control. Working noiselessly has been his trademark. He wouldn’t blow his trumpet because he believes time will tell of his good intentions and works.
Recently, I drove pass the IBB avenue, Uyo, into the adjoining streets around the Abak road federal housing estate and found that these areas which were previously submerged in water during heavy rainfall like what we have this season, were completely different. Billions of naira sunk into building deep canals solved the perennial problem. History will remember Udom Emmanuel for the IBB flood control miracle and other miracle project his administration has taken on – too numerous to enumerate here.
Robert Cheeke said, “Dare to be different. Successful people always stand out.”
Deacon Udom Emmanuel will be remembered as a Josiah of our time. Josiah was the King of Judah who returned the kingdom to God. He smashed and burned pagan articles, altars and idols, eradicated pagan priests and shrine prostitutes, desecrated the high places and removed pagan features that had been installed in the Temple of the Lord.
Udom Emmanuel has shown genuine love for God by rededicating the state to God. He has also built an ecumenical centre for the state as a landmark project, connecting the state and her citizens to God.
He has faced attacks from the occult and witchcraft society. Yet he has remained unmoved, as God has helped his administration achieve incredible feats in eight years. To be modest, Udom Emmanuel will be remembered as a pacesetter governor, especially as most of his investments begin to yield great results. Let’s trust God for his successor to excel beyond expectation.