Day ‘Father Of The Nation’ Received Udom, Akpabio, Others



AKWA Ibom State Governor, Emmanuel Udom, Friday evening, visited former President Olusegun Obasanjo at the latter’s Abeokuta residence.

The visit came hours after the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, also called on Obasanjo. Like Saraki, Udom had almost a two-hour closed-door meeting with the
former President.

In Udom’s entourage were his predecessor, Godswill Akpabio, and former Prelate of the Methodist Church, His Eminence, Sunday Mbang.

After leaving the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and announcing publicly that he would not join any political party again, Obasanjo appears to be playing well the role of statesman.

Udom, after the meeting, spoke to journalists, saying: “Our visit is in appreciation of Obasanjo, who is the father of the nation.”

He said of Obasanjo: “As a former President, he is a father to all. It is like you going to a hunt and you catch a big animal, you must come and show it to your father. It is just an act of courtesy and respect to come and show the father of the nation my recent victory at the polls.”

He added: “I came to tell him (Obasanjo) that I consulted him before going into the election, and now that I have won, I have to come and tell him that my efforts yielded positive fruits. As it is appropriate to thank God, it is also appropriate to thank man, who you see everyday.”

But if reporters who gathered at the venue expected the ‘father of the nation’ to take a few questions, they were mistaken. The ‘Baba’, walked out of the closed-door meeting, posed for a group photograph, and before reporters could say, ‘Daddy’, he turned and vanished into the mansion.

Akpabio, who also spoke, said he was delighted “seeing him (Obasanjo) in good health, despite his very busy schedule in bringing unity to Africa. I am very delighted. I am sure that you know that I am not new here; the only difference is that it is an uncommon visit, since I came with an uncommon visitor in the person of the new governor of Akwa
Ibom State”.

Asked if Obasanjo accepted the “uncommon visitor”, Akpabio responded: “Yes, he did. And gave him his blessing. He prayed for him that just like I succeeded, he even should succeed more than me.

“And that is the prayer of every father. I will like to see him do better than me. And so, mine is to give him my support, so that he can provide better services for our people. We did the best in the circumstances that we found ourselves and I believe strongly that since he is a child who believes in God, God will lead him aright, because when God is with you, nobody can be against you.”

On plans to change things in his state, Udom said his government is looking at “varieties of blueprints and we have a direction. First of all, we need to see what capacity we have on ground and that must be accessed. We have also discovered that it is one state that is so blessed by God”.

According to him, “We will equip the people with the right capacity to build, since we have a solid foundation. And with the foundation that we have on ground, we believe that we want to set up a solid structure that can actually take us higher”.

Reacting to the controversy over the Akwa Ibom State Election Tribunal, Akpabio said he still believed in the country’s judiciary, regretting that the state has “the second largest petition writers apart from Ekiti State”.

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