I regret having Akpabio as my successor, says Ex-Gov Attah

Former Akwa Ibom State, Victor Attah

A former governor of Akwa Ibom State, Victor Attah, has spoken of his regret at the emergence of Godswill Akpabio as his successor.

At a reception as the leader of the Ibibio ethnic nationality, Mr. Attah said his “one painful regret” was leaving office in 2007 with a “successor but without a succession”.

“Since leaving office I have frequently been asked if I have any regrets and my answer, without hesitation, has always been no, none at all. I have also been reminded that success without successor amounts to failure,” Mr. Attah said.

“So with the benefit of time, I must now confess that I do have one painful regret. The one regret I have is that, though I left with a successor, I left without succession,” the former governor said.

The remarks were Mr. Attah’s most direct comments about Governor Akpabio, who served as a commissioner in his administration.

The two men fell apart in the run-up to the 2007 election after Mr. Attah’s attempt at having his son-in-law succeed him, failed. Mr. Akpabio won the election instead.

Since leaving office, Mr. Attah has largely avoided the spotlight with his first major post-office duty being his participation at the just-concluded National Conference where he co-chaired the committee on devolution of powers.

The former governor’s reception Friday was organised by Akwa Esop Imaisong Ibibio, an umbrella socio-cultural group in Akwa Ibom State. The event attracted the cream of Akwa Ibom society across ethnic divides including first class monarchs, frontline politicians and groups.

In his acceptance speech after being installed as leader of the Ibibio nation, Mr. Attah, a former presidential candidate, opened up on his frustration with Mr. Akpabio.

He said his lack of succession plan has haunted him after office.

He also told the gathering how his ambition to become the president of Nigeria in 2007 was aborted, and how a “distinguished son” of the state openly claimed responsibility for the plot.

While acknowledging the individual lacked that capacity, Mr. Attah however questioned the benefits of such claim.

He advised Akwa Ibom people to forge as common front and support each other to gain the respect of other states and ethnic nationalities.

“If we do not want to continue to remain where we are and continue to have these insults and abuses hurled at us, we must learn to accept that, in a dark room, my candle does not burn brighter simply by my putting out the other person’s candle,” he said.

“On the contrary, the more candles we can light, the greater will be the brightness in that room. And in that situation, even the obscure one among us may become visible and recognised.”

In what he described as the renaissance of Ibibio nation, Mr. Attah advised the people to collectively choose a successor who will implement a people-based succession plan when Mr. Akpabio vacates as governor.

While he supported the call for the zoning of the governorship of the state to Eket senatorial district, the former governor however, noted that “certain other compelling determinants cannot be sacrificed on the altar of zoning”.

He reminded Ibibio people that in spite of their number, the tribe was in the past described as an ineffectual majority and challenged them to rise up, unite and face the common enemy of the state.

Continuing, he said, “We have shown righteous indignation at these insults but, undeniably, there is need for an examination of conscience, perchance we had provided the reason for the abuses.”

Also speaking at the occasion, the patriarch of Ibibio land, Essien Ekidem, thanked the people of the state for coming in large number to honour the former governor of the state.

Mr. Ekidem commended Mr. Attah for his contributions to the development of the state and the nation and urged him to continue to lead Ibibio people to greater height.

“You are all aware that it was Obong Attah who formed the coinage ‘Resource Control’ and fought for increased derivation for the Niger Delta region. Today, other people are using the derivation funds as they like,” Mr. Ekidem said.


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  • Dave Ifate

    Akpabio is more interested in his agenda as opposed to collective aspirations of akwaibomnians. Don’t allow him install his stooge in 2015. All our money will service his pension if he succeeds.

    • Good.

    • kainene

      what do you mean by collective aspirations of Akwaibomnians? I’d love to be enlightened on that? Are you trying to tell me you haven’t felt any positive impact of Akpabio’s administration? please!

  • True Nigerian

    Oga Obong Victor Attah, you regret “rigging”. That’s what it is. You regret “hand-picking” a candidate in a country that calls itself a democracy. This is why there is no peace in the country – so much injustice.

    You all hire thugs, sponsor violence, rigging, commit electoral rape in order to impose your successors on the people of Nigeria, and then you spend the next 8 years fighting battles of ego with the animals you often impose on us in order to protect your vested interests in crime, stealing, god-fatherism. And then your successors spend even more money (public funds), time, political capital, physical, mental and emotional energy in defending themselves from your types or matching your aggression with their own aggression brutishness and undercutting. The effect is that governance only happens in the country for a total of about 3 months out of the 4 or 8 years which the horrific leaders spend in office. That is the story behind both the birth of boko haram and the shocking exponential growth of its capacity.

    Nigeria will remain far from peace and stability, because the politics and leadership of the country are addicted to injustice while the people hate to hear the truth just as they love insincerity and outright lies.

    • Bless you. You have wisdom. May your life be long.

  • ne

    It is sad that in Nigeria we gather to celebrate and receive men and women who should ordinarily be prosecuted in court. These are men who did not have anything before they became Governor, then they became billionaires! Questionable wealth. Today, the people celebrate them. It is sad indeed and shows how far our values have fallen.
    These are men who looted the treasury seriously. Today, the current leader is only doing EXACTLY what he learned from his predecessor- only in a magnified manner!
    We continue to pray and hope for a Nigeria where our eyes will be opened and we will celebrate only those who are worth being celebrated.

  • kainene

    Truth be told, Governor Godswill Akpabio has fared far better than Obong Victor Attah ever did. I think the former governor is just pained. Gov. Godswill Akpabio can boast of been one of the best governors in Nigeria taking into cognisance all the infrastructure he has put in place and the dynamic changes he has made. Stop ranting Sir.

    • Felix Edoh

      I totally agree with you. i think hes just envious and insecure about the fact that Akpabio has outdone him in every aspect of Governance. for me tho, ill stand firmly behind akpabio any day anytime.

  • pentra kentra

    I just cant Understand this article. you regret what? you didnt leave what? I believe 99.9% of Akwa-Ibom people will agree that Apkabio is Indeed doing great. stay there and be talking about regret. *Enemy of Progress*

  • felix samson

    Joker! lmao! I went to Akwa Ibom last two weeks and I just wanted to settle down there. OMG! the place is soooooo beautiful and peaceful. The state is Blessed; All Thanks to Akpabio. Back to you Mr Regret; A man Like you;Akpabio has done and still doing what you couldn’t do even in decades to come if given the chance. Succession ko succession ni

    • Balarabe Hauwa

      It couldn’t be put better. Well said!

  • Balarabe Hauwa

    All these cry babies. If only you knew how lucky you’re that your successor is doing well. I’m a typical northerner. Sometimes I just wish I’m from Akwaibom. That state is so developed beyond believe. Akpabio is truly a man with focus and vision. I really do wish we could have more minded people like him. In all, I really dont know what this rant is about. Get a grip Sir.

  • sharp sharp

    hmmm…Nigerians. what is this article suppose to send out to the public please? Attah is jobless to be sincere. talking about Regret? He is just looking for attention and He has gotten it with a Big blow on his face. Shit!

  • Inemesit

    I can’t even be bothered by all the ranting of this past governor. I’d just drop a sentence. Governor Godswill Akpabio is an achiever,he’s done so well for my state.

    • wisdom

      we should not be bothered about all the bla bla bla to me akpabio has given us a name he is the man of all people

  • Inemesit

    Sorry, a sentence can’t describe Gov. Godswill Akpabio in my books. I even have pictures to drive my point further. He’s the father of uncommon transformation. I’m truly in awe of him. I really don’t know why some people wont just applaud his effort and move on.

  • Blessing Areo

    Akwa Ibom never felt as good as it did since Akpabio took over. i don’t know what Gov attah’s motives are for making such comments, but i stand firmly behind my Gov. do i sense Jealousy? hmmm

    • Enyinnaya

      But dont you think we also deserve to know those things Akpabio has done for the state of Akwaibiom ?

  • Helen Medupin

    Regrets why?, after all his successor Gov Akpabio has done a fantastic job in terms of Governance. Akwa Ibom has been totally transformed into a beautiful city, improving massively on how good it was already. so why now? all these talk and reasons given here in htis article don’t make any sense to me. so it it regrets because Akpabio has outdone him? or is there another untold story we dont know.

    • Enyinnaya

      Please explain better for me. What and what has he done please, I hear alot about him but cant figure out those things he has done

      • Johnson

        He built Akwaibom International Airport, the best of its kind in the West Africa. Just visit Uyo and see for yourself. Road construction is classic and global standard

  • Suleiman .S Kontagor

    lol, all these our politicians, sometimes they act like babies. its only when they have problems with the incumbent, then they’ll go about creating stories or start trying to blackmail the incumbent. its a shame tho cuz i expect better from such a man. the few years ive stayed in Akwaibom after serving here have been great. ive got no comlaints whatsoever, and so id like to point out that Attah’s claims are baseless.

  • Taytay

    Regrets ???? Why ? Oh well , I’m from Akwa ibom and Gov Akpabio has really transformed d state and Akwa ibom is beautiful , oh my God…so I don’t get y dis guy is regretting cos his successor is doing well

  • Adaeze Ogochukwu

    This is no news jor. What does Attah really want? Senatorial seat? Or he wants to still come back and force his son-in-law on us? We no want! Stop lobbying and stop tarnishing a working governor’s image please!

  • Adaora Oleh

    One of the major reasons why people love gov. Akpabio is because it is glaring how he stuck to the plans of his predecessor. He made sure he finished every project Attah started before implementing new ones of his own and that is why I call this entire article a big lie.

  • olododo

    In the end we only regret chances we didn’t take. Mr attah regrets the chance he didn’t take to transform Akwa Ibom. He regrets the fact that no one talks about him anymore because he just came and pass like the wind. No effect!

  • chief Richard

    what has happened has happened. now that you are regretting what should we do? I see no reason why you should be regretting putting a great Governor on seat after you. You can only feel this way if you have a skeleton in your cupboard.

  • Spencer

    if Mr Attah has love in him, i am sure he wouldn’t regret crap. He is just not making sense.

  • Jay

    Oh well , I just think dis Mr Attah is jealous cos Akpabio has outdone him in d aspect of governance…We love Akpabio !!!!!

    • Ibekwe

      Despite that, does he deserve to bedisrespectful to his boss?

      • afroblacco

        His Boss?

    • afroblacco

      Indeed, the heart of man is wicked.

      Attah is an absolute disappointment .

      I know what his beef his, throughout this Uncommon Transformation in Akwa Ibom, Akpabio had made the “mistake” of filming the ” Before and After” shots of the project locations.

      This clearly showed what was on ground before Akpabio assumed office, thereby showing to all and sundry that the predecessors before him as governors did nothing.

      Attah merely regrets and is so bitter that Akpabio didn’t cover his Yansh well enough.

  • Enyinnaya

    Many people have been clamoring that Akpabio is a deity god to Akwaibom state. How come this post now? What is actually happening? Can someone really tell me what this Governor Akpabio is doing that makes people hail him such? Is he not just one of the Nigerian State Governors ?

    • Johnson

      Governor Akpabio is an epitome of outstanding leadership. Good wine needs no bush

  • Johnson

    For those asking what Governor Akpabio has done, just take a look at these photos and see how beautiful it is to have a vissioner as a governor

  • Ibekwe

    Every Nigerian Governor is wicked to their predecessor . Why? It is very bad to bite the finger that fed you. Why would Akpabio do such thing? It is wickedness to the highest order.

  • Dammy O

    Akpabio is a great man and I really don’t know why Mr Attah is regretting having Akpabio as his successor , Akpabio has really transformed Akwa ibom state..and d one dat really made me happy was d free qualitive and compulsory education

  • idiyang

    you are regretting because you could not do any thing the way Godswill transform the state. How can not regret if you can not do the road that leads to your house. Akpabio is good transformer and also a giver.

  • afroblacco

    Oh by the way HAPPY BIRTHDAY GOVERNOR GOSWILL AKPABIO .

    Many happy returns too , you are special.