An Exemplary Life of Service
In 2015, Chief Senator Dr. Godswill Obot Akpabio (CON) made history by becoming the Minority Leader of the 8th Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria even though he was just elected into the Nigerian Senate for his first term. Through his leadership, he provided some stability to Nigeria's nascent democracy. However, in the overall national interest, Senator Akpabio on August 4, 2018 resigned his position as Senate Minority Leader following an imminent movement from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC.) This singular act has catapulted the party into a formidable election machinery.
From early childhood, providence honed the leadership acumen of Akpabio, with an innate passion for helping people expand their imagination and maximize their potentials. This passion did not only deepen in him a strong sense of justice and a great passion for excellence, it led him to positions of leadership in the different stages of his life. Like a diligent coach, destiny prepared him painstakingly for impact and influence.
Driven by the same passion and popular acceptance, he became the Governor of Akwa Ibom State in May 2007, and commenced a revolution in the state, which excited the imagination of the people, and had been aptly described as "uncommon transformation.
He has been widely honored -and celebrated within and outside the state because of his great investments in human and infrastructural development. He has emerged as one of the most honored men in our country today,- and a treasure in Akwa Ibom State. His visionary leadership style has motivated and shaped an entire generation of Akwa Ibom people and it has become a metaphor for excellence.
The son of Chief Obot Akpabio and Madam Lucy Obot Akpabio (nee Inyangetor) of Ukana Ikot Ntuen in Essien Udim Local Government Area, Chief Godswill Akpabio was born on December 9, 1962. He Lost his father early in life and was raised by his mother who inculcated in him the values of hard work, discipline and honesty.
He was educated at Methodist Primary School, Ukana, Essien Udim LGA, Akwa Ibom State; the prestigious Federal Government College, Port Harcourt, Rivers State; and the University of Calabar, Cross River State, where he obtained a Degree in Law. He was called to the Nigerian bar in 1988.
A MIRROR ON A LIFE OF SERVICE
At Federal Government College, his leadership style shone like a star and he was appointed the General Senior Prefect. In the University of Calabar, his charisma endeared him to the students and he was elected the Speaker of the Students' Parliament.
He had a brief stint as a teacher and as an associate partner with Paul Usoro and Co., a leading law firm in the Country. In 2002, Chief Akpabio rose to the position of the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of EMIS Telecoms Limited, a pioneer fixed wireless telecommunications company in Lagos. In this position, he helped in shaping the future of the burgeoning telecoms industry. He had earlier served as the National Publicity Secretary of the Association of Telecommunication Companies in Nigeria, (ATCOM) while a director of EMIS.
THE CALL TO SERVICE
In 2002, he was appointed the Honourable Commissioner for Petroleum and Natural Resources. Between 2002 and 2006, he served as a Commissioner in three key ministries (Petroleum and Natural Resources, Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs and Lands and Housing) because of the indelible imprints of competence and efficiency associated with his stewardship.
His admirable attributes, charisma and virtues led to a mass, statewide agitation for him to seek higher office. His Governorship bid in 2007 was anchored on the unselfish premise, "let God's will be done."
With this mass support, he defeated 57 aspirants in the hotly-contested primary election to emerge the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in 2006. On April 24, 2007 he was elected Governor. And in 2011 he was re-elected Governor, after running a campaign anchored on the same slogan "Let God's will be done again." In 2015, he was elected a Senator and subsequently, the Minority Leader of the 8th Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He is the recipient of over 30 chieftaincy titles. These include the Uko Akwa Ibom (awarded to him by the Akwa Ibom State Council of Chiefs), Utuenikang Ibibio, lberedem Ibibio, Nta Nta Offiong Annang, Atta of Eket and the Nta Nta Oro, to mention just a few.
A Christian of the Catholic Faith, he is happily married to the beautiful and amiable Mrs. Ekaette Unoma Godswill Akpabio and the marriage is blessed with four beautiful daughters and a son. He and his wife share a great passion for the underprivileged and for service to the community.
His Excellency, Senator Godswill Obot Akpabio's sojourn through life appears to have been pre-ordained and conditioned for leadership and impact. His life is file an emerging radiance and we have only caught a glimpse of his potential.