Why Godswill Akpabio did not attend AKISAN Convention: The Arrest of Ekerete Ekpenyong in Houston
When Godswill Akpabio left Nigeria with his contingent to attend the AIDN Economic Summit in Houston, Texas, on August 4, 2012, his planned itinerary included his presence at the AKISAN National Convention, which was held a week after the event in Houston. But when Akpabio hurriedly returned to Nigeria, those who were not members of his inner circle wondered why, and AKISAN officials, who had included Akpabio in the plan of events, were disappointed. It has just been revealed that Akpabio's sudden return to Nigeria was not unconnected with the arrest of Ekerete Ekpenyong at an airport in Houston. Who is Ekerete Ekpenyong?
Ekerete Ekpenyong, in partnership with the good-for-nothing elements of the society, such as Onofiok Luke, Enobong Uwah, and a local drug addict known simply as "Iraq," has been used by Godswill Akpabio to terrorize the innocent and defenseless people of Akwa Ibom State. Initially, Ekerete Ekpenyong was a member of the cult group known as the "12 Disciples", but after some internal disagreement with the group, he left the 12 Disciples to establish another one known as "I-9." In preparation to cause mayhem in the State for Akpabio during the election period, the name of the group was changed from I-9 to "I-13." Ekerete Ekpenyong was appointed the leader of the group.
During the 2010-2011 election campaign, sources have confirmed that it was Ekerete Ekpenyong and Onofiok Luke, whom Godswill Akpabio directed to use the "I-13" cult group (though at that time, it was known as the "12 Disciples") to plan and execute the failed attempt to kidnap the mother of Senator Akpan Udoedehe. Other sources have confirmed that 90% of the killings and kidnappings in Akwa Ibom State have been carried out by the I-13 cult group, which is led and directed by Ekerete Ekpenyong.
Ekerete Ekpenyong is from Etoi. As a reward for his success in reigning terror and havoc in Akwa Ibom State, Godswill Akpabio gave the order for him to be sworn in as the Chairman of Uyo Local Government, a position he held until a few days ago, when he was arrested and detained (still in detention) in the United States for money laundering. The following is a true account of the situation that led to the arrest and detention of Ekerete Ekpenyong.
Reliable sources have confirmed that during the trip from Nigeria to Houston for the AIDN meeting, Akpabio gave a bag, full of dollars, to Ekerete Ekpenyong to carry for him but should be claimed as belonging to Ekerete Ekpenyong. Because Ekerete Ekpenyong is a drug addict, an alcoholic, naive, and ignorant of foreign laws, because he has never left the shores of Nigeria, complied with regal that he was obeying “His Excellency“; he had no idea of what would be awaiting him when he landed at Houston, Texas.
At Sam Houston International Airport, the United States authorities seized the bag and the money, but they allowed Ekerete to go free for the AIDN meeting. While the money was in the custody of US officials, Ekerete Ekpenyong was told that he could collect the bag and the money when he is ready to return to Nigeria. He agreed. However, before US authorities cleared him for entry into the American soil, Ekerete Ekpenyong was interrogated for awhile. During the interrogation, he told officials, among other stories, that the money belonged to Godswill Akpabio, the Governor of Akwa Ibom State.
While Ekerete was drinking and fraternizing with prostitutes in Houston at the expense of Akwa Ibom people, the United States officials went to work by conducting investigation to determine why exactly such a huge sum of money was being taken into the United States. They found out that it was a clear case of money laundering. Since Ekerete Ekpenyong had told the US agents that the money belongs to Akpabio, the investigating officials managed to contact Akpabio for some explanations regarding the money. When contacted, a shaken Akpabio could only tell the US investigators that Ekerete Ekpenyong “is the Mayor of Uyo. Therefore he has every right to carry such amount of money to reward investors who want to do business in Akwa Ibom State.” The American agents thanked Akpabio for his explanations but made it clear to him that he should be available for more questioning.
Akpabio, who is a born crook, knew that the next time the FBI contacts him, it would not be through a telephone call; they would knock on the door of his hotel room and would be arrested, as an accomplice to money laundering. Akpabio's aides advised him to return to Nigeria as fast as he could. The next morning, Akpabio boarded the first available plane, back to Nigeria; he fled the US!
The juice of the story is that no one told Ekerete Ekpenyong not to return to US agent to reclaim the money. After the AKISAN National Convention in Orlando, Florida, he returned to Houston and walked into the FBI office, with a large grin hanging on his wide and thick lips, and said; “ Saah, (as in Sir), my name is Ekerete Ekpenyong. I am the Mayor of Uyo in Akwa Ibom State. Last week when I landed here at the airport, my money was taken away and I was told to come back and collect it when I am ready to go back home. That is why I am here, to collect the money.”
The FBI agents offered him a seat and asked for documents to confirm his identity. He tendered his PDP identity card. The agents demanded another document. Ekerete Ekpenyong tendered his Nigerian Passport, which is what the FBI agents were actually looking for. He was told to stand up. He did. “You are under arrest for money laundering. They read to him the Miranda (You have every right to remain silent. Any information given by you would be used against you in the court of law……).
Sources say when Ekerete was arrested by the FBI, he was stunned. For several years that he has committed capital crimes by killing and kidnapping people for Godswill Akpabio, he has never in his life has to face the law and experience what it means to be placed under arrest. This was an eye-opener for Ekerete Ekpenyong and a revelation to him that all his criminal activities could only be tolerated in a place like Akwa Ibom State, where officials, who were placed in office to protect the people, have become predators of the very people they were mandated to protect and secure.
As I write this, Ekerete Ekpenyong is still in detention, while Akpabio is enjoying himself with his wife---Unoma--and his children. His arrest should serve as a warning to all the young people of Ibibio extraction, that when you do the biddings of Godswill Akpabio, it is you, not Akpabio, who would suffer the consequences. You should ask yourself why Godswill Akpabio did not give the bag to the Chairman of Ukanafun Local Government---his own Local Government---who was also among his contingent, but, instead, gave it to the Chairman of Uyo Local Government. Think about it.
Ikpafak Thompson Essien