New Secretary to the Akwa Ibom State Government, Mr. Gabriel Emmanuel Udom is reportedly suffering from a psycho-level superiority complex and is said to be carrying on with the airs of someone that is already about to assume the governorship of the oil-rich state.
This is in spite of the fact that he is a political neophyte on a new learning curve. He is also said to be grossly deficient in decorum, bandies some obscene figure as his previous salary and annual emolument, whilst boasting to whoever cares to listen that “I’m not your equal, I’m here on secondment”.
Sources told us that the former Zenith Bank Executive Director lacks soft skills and the democratic temperament to work amicably with others “as he is full of himself in a rather disrespectful way”, a source told us.
Akpabio’s choice of Udom who hails from Onna Local Government Area of Eket Senatorial District following the resignation of Obong Umana Okon Umana, the immediate past Secretary to the State Government, is said to not have gone well with the political class.
Also, rumours are rife about Udom being groomed to take over the governorship position from the incumbent in 2015, a development which is already beginning to heat up the polity.
Seasoned politicians from across the state are said to be grumbling rather loudly about the governor’s preference for an “external candidate” who has no experience, whatsoever, in politics and who has not contributed anything to the growth of the PDP in the state, over those who have served the state in various capacities for years.
Some have complained loudly to us under conditions of anonymity that “the new SSG feels the way and manner he was appointed gives him special status and confers superiority on him, and carries on like he’s been singled out for great political advancement”. Our source added.
“Udom is busy sounding alarm bells at every opportunity and warning others not to mess around with him, he’s not politically savvy at all and behaves like his appointment is a huge favour for the Akwa Ibom people”, volunteered another source who also added that “he is alienating the very people who would watch his back and help to promote his career instead of forging an alliance with them”.
There are also speculations that Udom has entered into an agreement with a group of professionals from the state (to which he belongs), to the effect that he should just ride on the influence of Chief Godswill Akpabio to get into the governorship seat and thereafter dump him and his policies for their own private agenda.
But, like the late Chinua Achebe admonished in his classic novel Things Fall Apart, those who have had their kernels cracked for them by the gods should not forget to be humble. Udom should learn from the mistakes of his predecessor and endeavour to be level-head.
His appointment is about service to the people and has nothing to do with egotism. And throwing his credentials at everyone, grandstanding at every occasion as well as his unwillingness to accommodate opposing views may only serve to see him through the exit door. A word is enough for the wise.