Godswill Akpabio, a former minister of Niger Delta Affairs and a senator-elect from Akwa Ibom State, has described President Muhammadu Buhari as the “father of the nation”.
Mr Akpabio, who spoke with reporters on Sunday after a visit to Mr Buhari at the Presidential Villa, said he went to present his certificate of return as a senator-elect for Akwa Ibom North-West District to the president.
The former governor of Akwa Ibom State is one of the contenders for the office of the Senate president for the yet-to-be inaugurated 10th National Assembly.
He said he told Mr Buhari about his aspiration and that the president was “happy to hear that”.
Mr Akpabio said he was grateful to the president for appointing him minister of the Niger Delta Affairs when he lost his re-election to the Senate in 2019.
He said he would introduce “a lot of reforms” if he is elected Senate president.
“Intend to bring a lot of reforms into the Senate, in the ways and manners we do business, to assist the next administration to succeed. We will be very thorough in doing everything; we’ll bring about loyalty to the Constitution, we’ll bring about loyalty to Nigerians.
“We will tackle issues through legislations to empower Nigerians and particularly the youth. The restiveness that we are seeing across the nation, we’ll do our best to make good laws and to assist the administration to bring about policies that will empower the youths of the country,” he said.
The reporters asked Mr Akpabio about his consultations with other lawmakers and his party, the All Progressives Congress.
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“Yes, we have been doing that, we’ve done a lot of consultations and they’ve been very positive and well received. It’s almost like a woman who is already eight months pregnant, just a month to deliver,” he responded.
Wanted for questioning by EFCC
The senator-elect has been invited by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for questioning over corruption investigation.
The EFCC a few days ago wrote to Mr Akpabio, through his lawyer, Umeh Kalu, SAN, requesting him to turn himself in at the commission’s headquarters, Abuja, on 9 May.
It is unclear for now if the invitation was in connection with his activities while serving as minister of Niger Delta Affairs or during his tenure as governor of oil-rich Akwa Ibom
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