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Udom Emmanuel: Footprints of a leader who succeeds against all odds, By Richard Peters 

Living in Nigeria today is the most exciting moment of our lives as a people. It’s a time that leadership is “limus tested” in the face of myriad of challenges. We now know who a true leader is. Excuses no longer work on the psyche of people. Gaslighting, emotional blackmail, deceit, mind manipulation, falsehood and “sweet-tonguing” are no longer valid tools of suppression, oppression and depression. Everyone appears to know so much, and it’s the best time to be alive.

Leaders are now expected to “show working”. If you were schooled around here, you wouldn’t forget the cliche often used by your mathematics teacher when he needed students to prove how they got a particular calculation correct. With the understanding that most students got the answer through guess work, he must insist that you show how you got it. And so in an attempt to know the truth, he would say “Show working”. Prove something to me. Convince me that you are a true leader. And today, the people are interested in” show working”. They no longer want excuses.


The true test of a man is not when all is well, but when clouds of challenges envelope the silver lining in the heavens. In the face of dwindling economy dignified by the global health emergency, some leaders have proven to be out of touch with reality and the people. Many have remained confused, not knowing where to start from, and what to do.

However, there are leaders who have shown resilience, triggered by the “I can do all things…” mentality. And this is the kind of leader we all need now, not those who would often excuse their excuses to give you reasons why they can’t achieve much. But true leadership is finding a path out of the forest of confusion and frustration.

Akwa Ibom State is so blessed with a leader who has shown the way out of a seemingly economic dilemma that almost crippled the global economy. Drawing strength and tenacity from his background as a banker cum corporate administrator, Gov.Udom Emmanuel has shown class, ingenuity and excellence in driving the economic and industrial vehicle of our dear state; breaking down walls of resistance erected by the global economic realities.

While other leaders are fidgeting and swimming in the ocean of confusion, Gov. Emmanuel swims in the pool of new economic ideas, transmogrifying a system that pays premium to laziness and siphoning of public funds, stenciling down signatures of accountability and transparency in governance.

Today in Akwa Ibom State, we don’t only boast of purposeful leadership, but an administration that has devoted attention to myriad of sectors including education, health, agriculture, sports development, aviation, entrepreneurial development, women and youth empowerment, to mention but a few.

These and many more are achieved at a time when people thought nothing much could be achieved. But Gov. Emmanuel has defied all odds, and made Akwa Ibom a pentagon of possibilities.

The health care delivery services in the state have been celebrated nationally. Udom has remodelled hospitals across the three senatorial districts and equipped them with the most modern facilities; some are fully digitalized- from Methodist Hospital in Ituk Mbang, the celebrated isolation center and PCR laboratory to General hospitals in Ikot Okoro, Etinan, Iquita, Ikono, Awa, Eket and others.

Gov. Emmanuel has equally remodelled over 2000 classroom blocks and paid over 600 million naira as WAEC fees for students. These and more are eloquent testimonies of development in basic education.

It should be equally noted that Gov. Emmanuel has embarked on massive construction of roads and devoted much attention to infrastructure, despite the fact that low funding occasioned by the dreaded coronavirus pandemic has affected the speed with which these projects took off. But there’s an assurance that the Gov. Emmanuel that we all know, will not leave any stone unturned as he is determined and more passionate about the completion agenda which is still on course. Gov. Emmanuel is showing working in leadership.

(c) Richard P.

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