The five-star performance of His Excellence, Governor Godswill Obot Akpabio during his first term of office was such that the ‘blind could feel and the deaf could see.’ Within the period, Akwa Ibom State had become an infrastructure ‘Jeruselem’, with socio-economic activities booming like never before, thus fulfilling his first term promise to “illuminate the path of development, empowerment, education, social justice and infrastructural renaissance”. During his first term in office, he earned for himself the title of ‘A Promise Keeper.’
Having kept faith with the people through his unprecedented performance, the political profile of Chief Akpabio rose astronomically within and outside Akwa Ibom State, and shining like a northern star, many notable national and international individuals as well as organizations, started coming into the State to see the works of the man who has redefined good governance in style, enthusiasm and creativity.
Accordingly, when he accepted the request of the people from ethnic nationalities, who had endorsed him to run for a second term of office, he received relevant statewide endorsements. Ati Annang, Mbek Oro and Afigh Iwaad Ekid set the pace for the plethora of endorsements that underscored the undisputed popularity of Chief Akpabio.
The gale of endorsements was crowned on October 2009, when the largest ethnic group, the Ibibio, gathered at the Asan Ibibio grounds to receive the people’s governor and unequivocally lent their voice to the call for him to seek a second term in office. On that occasion, the Chairman of the planning committee and former Military Governor of the State, Otuekong Idongesit Nkanga (rtd), remarked that, “with what you have done so far with the mandate, with your even spread of projects and amenities to all sections and segments of the State and its people, we are satisfied that you are keeping your promise of reinventing the era of Ibibio Union unity.” He, therefore, declared, “Given your resolve to advance the cause of unity of Akwa Ibom people,.... I have the mandate of the entire Ibibio Nation to once again endorse Chief Godswill Akpabio for a second term in office.”
In accepting the call to run for a second term of office, Chief Akpabio declared on September 20, 2010, that “Today, as a proof that the voice of the people is the voice of God, as a testament that whatsoever is born of faith overcomes the world and as testimony that your wishes are my command, I stand before you my dear compatriots and the Lord God Almighty, to declare my intention to seek reelection in 2011.”
The victory of Governor Akpabio in the April 26, 2011 gubernatorial election, therefore, was not surprising. Akpabio won with a landslide, polling 975,585 votes against his closest opponent, Senator John James Akpanudoedehe of the Action Congress of Nigeria, who polled 163,449 votes. With that victory, the uncommon transformation of Akwa Ibom State continued, with its story, reaching nations around the world.