By Austen Akhagbeme
Senator Godswill Akpabio is probably among the tribe of lucky politicians who enjoy popular approbation and applause from his countrymen, or so it seems.
His recent 61st birthday celebration and the accompanying fanfare that turned the stadium named after him, into a beehive of activities laced with opulence and elite profligacy by political cronies, associates, friends and mostly the people of Akwa-Ibom state, speaks volumes of the general perception of his people about him.
It is not a crime to be celebrated. But like every other thing in our clime, excessive indulgence, cajolery, and false heroism often take the shine away from what ordinarily would have passed for a mere celebration of life, given the short life expectancy for Nigeria in 2023, which is 55.75 years.
Unconfirmed Information had it that even MDAs, like NIMASA, NPA, NNPC, NDDC etc were contacted in the sponsorship of this Jamboree, which was alleged to have been officially kick-started by Senator Barinada Mpigi who moved a motion on the floor of the house, ably seconded by Senator Osita Ngwu.
Dragging officialdom into private egoistic ventures has become the Nigerian lot. It is what truly shows that we are Nigerians. The state purse must directly or indirectly suffer for our elite’s insatiable appetite for aggrandisement and razmataz.
There is no denying the fact that the former governor did well for his people in his days as the governor of Akwa Ibom State, especially in the area of infrastructural development.
His homecoming (sorry, birthday) was, therefore, a tacit but resounding warning to Governor Umo Eno of the PDP, that Akpabio and his party were on their way back to the reins of power in the state in 2027. Believe Nigerian politicians and you will believe anything. Happy Birthday to the distinguished.