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Akwa Ibom State Politics: Dissolution of EXCO- A manifestation of Godswill Akpabio's Mental Illness

By Ikpafak Thompson Essien
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Godswill Obot Akpabio is a mad man. It is a well known fact that the man has had a history of a serious mental illness, long before Obong Victor Attah, who had no clue to this health history of Akpabio, hired him into his Cabinet as a Commissioner. And when Senator Akpan Udoedehe supported Akpabio to become a governor in 2007, I can bet my life that he had no clue that he was dealing with and supporting a real whacko; a mentally deranged person.

The way and manner Godswill Akpabio governs the State is a manifestation of his mental status---unstable. He rarely lives in Akwa Ibom State, which explains why a bunch of cultists have taken over and run the system as if Akwa Ibom State is a cult organization. Akpabio himself is afraid of these myriads of cultists that surround him day-in and day-out in the form of Personal Assistants and Commissioners.

Sometime last year when Akpabio announced that he would curb cultism in Akwa Ibom State, no one took him seriously, because everyone knew he was bluffing. As it turns out, it is very likely that Akwa Ibom is the only State in Nigeria where cultists have more power than the State Chief Executive Officer. And it doesn't take much to realize this fact; all anyone has to do is to take a second look at the qualities and characteristics of the people in Akpabio's Cabinet. But for a few, the rest are cultists, killers, and (like Akpabio) drug addicts.

Last week, when he announced the dissolution of his Cabinet, everyone heaved a sigh of relieve, hoping that Akpabio would bring in responsible men and women, who can think rationally, to help introduce ideas and programs that would help alleviate the sufferings of the masses.

Instead, in a classic behavior of a man with mental issues, all Akpabio did was to rehire the very men and women he announced to the people of letting go. Enobong Uwah--a cultist--was reappointed. Don Etim---the most hated and wicked man in Akpabio's Cabinet ---was reappointed. Aniekan Umanah---the jester--was rehired (after people began to shout). So also was another devil by the name of Enoidem, who, during the Election of 2011, was caught toting an AK47. Enoidem was arrested and detained by soldiers, but was released only after Godswill Akpabio had to bribe the military.

These are some of the same bunch of Satans that have caused problems for Akpabio and the entire State of Akwa Ibom. Now, everyone is asking why Akpabio had to dissolve his Cabinet in the first place.

Unfortunately, Akpabio could not afford to let go these devils, else they would f--k him up--really bad--because these Satans know every secrets of Akpabio, including those he has killed and how much he has stolen from the people of Akwa Ibom State.

Shortly before Akpabio announced the dissolution of his cabinet, rumor had it that Don Etim and Akpabio's wife (Unoma Ekaete) were at each other's throat, fighting over whom, between two of them, has the right to impose a candidate on the people. Unoma wanted her friend to become a Chairman of a Local Government. Don Etim had someone else in mind because, according sources; he could not tolerate an “Igbo woman”

telling him what to do in his Local Government Area. Akpabio was caught in the middle.

Eventually, Unoma sat Akpabio down and gave him a choice; remove Don Etim from “your government or you go marry him.” Akpabio scratched his head, which at that time was all he could do. Of course, he could not afford to lose his wife. At the same time, if he let go Don Etim, Akpabio knew he would be digging his own grave. I don't like Akpabio, but when I was told the story, I felt sorry for him and the song, “torn between two lovers” immediately flashed in my mind.

To make it appear as if Akpabio was listening to his wife, the next morning, he convened a meeting of the Exco. At the meeting, Akpabio did not reveal the real reason he summoned his cabinet members.

Instead, he resorted to his usual childish illusion; he told members of his cabinet a different reason for the meeting.

This is what Akpabio said to the members of his cabinet. “I have noticed that every time I have a discussion with the Executive members, as soon as the meeting is over, Thompson Essien would report the proceedings of the meeting on the Internet. I know that one of you told Thompson Essien that Paul Ekpo resigned from the Cabinet to become the Chairman of PDP. Now, I want to know who revealed that information to Thompson Essien.”

Eyewitnesses who attended the meeting said that after Akpabio stopped talking, no one said a word. Akpabio then abruptly left the meeting; others waited thinking he would return, he didn't. Later that night, Akpabio announced that he had dissolved the Exco and added that until the next Exco is formed, Permanent Secretaries would take over the duties of Commissioners. Nearly all the members of his Cabinet (including the Permanent Secretaries) heard the announcement for the first time on radio and on television. Because the announcement was made at night, some Permsecs and Commies did not hear it until after they arrived for duty the next morning in their respective Ministries.

Sources say due to the pressure his wife was exerting on him, Akpabio had to dissolve the Cabinet in order to create an opportunity to let go Don Etim. According to witnesses, when Akpabio contacted the Lebanese-looking Don Etim to tell him that he would be removed from his Government, Don Etim dared him. “I dare you to remove me from your Cabinet,” Don Etim is said to have told Akpabio. “Go ahead and do it.

If I leave the government, I can assure you that you will never last as a governor of this State.” Several sources have confirmed that the Lebanese-looking Don Etim has no respect for Akpabio and that behind his back; he frequently refers to Akpabio (in Annang language) as a “mad man.”

With the response of Don Etim, Akpabio knew he had a problem in his hand. According one source, Akpabio had no choice but to go back home and have a husband-to-wife discussion with his wife. “Listen darling,”

Akpabio told Unoma Ekaete, “you know, these people I brought into the government are mad people. You must understand, I cannot let go of theses people just like that (he snapped his fingers) or they will kill me. You know, they don't like me. Please let go of your choice for the Chairman. Let Don Etim bring in his person. I don't want any trouble with that man. After all, na wettin you go get from all this?”

Akpabio went on, blah, blah, blah with his wife. And it worked. The next day, Akpabio asked his aides to resubmit all the names of the same members (except three new ones) of his Exco, which he dissolved just the previous day, to the Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly for rubber-stamp.

In retrospect, the entire notion of cabinet reshuffling looked like a child's play. However, when one really looks down at the behavior of Godswill Akpabio in the way he handled the dissolution of Akwa Ibom State Executive Council, one cannot help but wonder if Akpabio's madness has resurfaced, after a long time of cessation.

Else, how does one explain the attitude where one man handles and manipulates the affairs of the State as if the State is his personal business? Those who know Akpabio say that in spite of obtaining a degree in law at the University of Calabar, the man often behaves like a real idiot. And many people are beginning to understand why he could not pass the Nigerian Bar Examination, which would have enabled him to practice law as a Barrister.

Essien writes from Portland, Oregon.

Disclaimer: "The views/contents expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of Ikpafak Thompson Essien and do not necessarily reflect those of The Nigerian Voice. The Nigerian Voice will not be responsible or liable for any inaccurate or incorrect statements contained in this article."