Akpabio Flees London To Us, Says Won’t Return To Nigeria Soon, Puts Abuja Properties, Others For Sale
Embattled former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Chief Godswill Akpabio yesterday gave his successor the most heart breaking news – he won’t be returning to Nigeria soon following the raid of the presidential lodge he (Akpabio) stayed where stockpile of arms and dollar notes were discovered in a surprise raid by a special squad of the Department of State Security.
The incidence which took the State government and Akpabio by surprise has led to the federal government listing the fugitive Governor on the watch list by both foreign and Nigerian security forces. Akpabio, investigation reveals got wind of a covert move to get him arrested on his arrival from London where he claims he went to receive medical treatment after surviving a mysterious and controversial car accident in Abuja and fled to America over the weekend.
Impeccable sources say Akpabio called his successor (Udom Emmanuel) on Sunday evening after the church service to mark Udom Emmanuel’s 100 days in office and informed the Governor that with the dilemma he has found himself, it is practically impossible to return to the country.
“The Governor was not himself Sunday night moments after Akpabio called him on phone to inform him that he won’t be returning to the country till sometime in December. The news not only devastated the Governor but has made him look more vulnerable than ever. We had expected Akpabio back this week but from the look of things, things have gone bad for both Akpabio and Udom”, said a close source to the Akwa Ibom state Governor.
Akpabio who was expected to return to the country to defend his election currently before the tribunal in ABUJA might also have tactically given up on the case.
Though he opened his defence last Wednesday, he seems to have lost hope after the National Secretary of the PDP and the Chairman of the Akwa Ibom State PDP Electoral Panel told the court that the party had no candidate for the disputed Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial seat.
Unconfirmed reports say he allegedly flee London to the US over the weekend. But his chances of escaping seems remote if the federal government decides to seek his extradition back to the country.
Already, the Department of Homeland Security has placed his family members and relatives on the watch list. There are strong indication that the government may freeze all bank accounts of the embattled Governor. A circular to that effect is being prepared by the relevant agencies.
This informed the decision of Akpabio to be keeping money in cash in houses and bunkers than lodge them in banks.
Meanwhile Akpabio has started putting for sale some properties he allegedly acquired with public funds. But most prospective buyers have avoided buying the properties because of the likely political repercussions the likely probe may have on such transaction.
– Global Concord