The Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress(APC) has fired back at Gov Nyesom Wike for labelling his predecessor and former Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, a “total failure” for perceived inability to attract development to Rivers in over seven years as minister.
This came as prominent South-South leader, His Highness, Anabs Sara-Igbe, lashed out at Wike, accusing him of hatred for the people of Kalabari ethnic nationality and Ijaw nation.
Wike had at a public function in Port Harcourt on Monday fiercely dressed down the Rivers APC leader for expressing disappointment at perceived insensitivity of his administration to the well-being of former minister, Alabo T. O. Graham-Douglas through the protracted illness leading to his death as Wike was also absent at the funeral on Saturday.
Responding to the governor’s tirade against Amaechi, spokesman for Rivers APC, Darlington Nwauju, said: “The APC is not a shallow ground where people cannot keep records or lacking institutional memory. We are abreast of history as we’re all Rivers people. We know who is who and what is what.
“Our response to Wike scathing remarks against the minister and our party is not to debunk claims, but to rightly lay bare the truth. We are interested in the insinuation that our leader, Amaechi, is a failure and could not attract anything as a minister to Rivers.
“This (Amaechi) is a man that has served Rivers passionately as governor, served as speaker, contributed immensely to success of the APC in Nigeria. There are satisfactory proof that the claim that our leader never did anything to better lives of Rivers people is totally false, sheer blackmail and we as a party will not allow his image to be so smeared.
“Under him, the Afam Fast Power Project: Construction of 186 million, 240MW expansion for the existing Afam Power Plant, commenced in 2016, almost completed.
“Rehabilitation of Sections 1 to 4 of the Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway (ongoing). Construction of ongoing N120 billion Bonny-Bodo Road in Rivers State, jointly funded by the Federal Government and the Nigeria Liquified Natural Gas Company Limited.
“Completion of new Port Harcourt International Airport Terminal. Brand new International Airport Terminal in Rivers State, completed and commissioned in 2018. Ground-breaking in 2021 for reconstruction of Port Harcourt-Maiduguri Rail Line.
“Completion of installation and commissioning into service of a brand new 300MVA 330/132/33kV power transformer in the Alaoji Transmission Substation, increasing the station’s installed capacity from 450MVA to 750MVA and making it the biggest substation in Southern Nigeria.
“The new transformer has boosted supply to Enugu Distribution Company, benefiting Abia North (Ohafia, Arochukwu, Item, Abriba), Imo State (Okigwe, Arondi-Izuogu), and parts of Ebonyi and Rivers states.”
On claim by Wike that Rivers APC has become empty with defection of several members to the PDP, Nwauju countered that nothing could be farther from the truth, saying ruling PDP in Rivers has suffered more high profile defections to the APC.
You hate Kalabari, Ijaw, Sara-Igbe blasts Wike Wike
Sara-Igbe, in a statement, yesterday, said the governor’s claim of spending N50 million on the health of elder statesman, Alabo Tonye Graham-Douglas, whose burial, he shunned, last weekend, was “political, insincere, incongruous and diversionary.”
He said: “It is appalling and most regrettable that Wike, rather than exhibiting a high level of maturity, responsibility, responsiveness and provide good leadership, anchored on equity fairness and justice, has politically and economically emasculated and enslaved the people of Kalabari ethnic nationality and Ijaw nation by extension since assuming of office as governor.
“It is also unfortunate that rather than evolve measures that would foster cohesion and peaceful co-existence among the people, and give all ethnic nationalities in Rivers State a sense of belonging, Governor Wike has openly shown his disdain, absolute hatred and nepotism against the people of Kalabari Kingdom and the Ijaw nation at large.