By Akanimo Sampson
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State, one of the strategic oil and gas states in Southern Nigeria has given reasons why they are not eager to sail with President Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) on the same political boat in the coming February 16 election.
The obviously bitter Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governor says for close to four years, Buhari deliberately refused to grant any request for assistance from the Rivers State Government.
According to him, ‘’President Buhari spent his failed time in government struggling to generate security crisis in Rivers because he was not interested in the growth of the state’’.
Governor Wike was speaking at a PDP campaign rally for Ahoada East Local Government Area just as the United States Ambassador to Nigeria, Stuart Symington was busy pointing out that the coming elections will define the future of the country.
The US envoy has accordingly urged all stakeholders to promote credible and peaceful elections.
Addressing journalists after meeting with Governor Wike at the Government House Port Harcourt on Wednesday, Symington declared that all institutions of government must do what is right.
According to him, ‘’all of the institutions of government must do what is right. Election is not a matter of life and death. It is a matter of defining the future of Nigeria. There must be free, fair and credible elections’’.
He said that the idea of a free people with the ability to make free decisions remains the most important idea in the world. ‘’I am quite confident that on election day, the sons and daughters of the powerful will not be out there causing violence’’.
While urging citizens to have the courage to reject any call for them to be engaged in violence during the elections, he also charged the electorate to always ask their political leaders to outline ways through which they will actualise their promises.
In the mean time, Wike says Rivers people are determined to vote for Atiku Abubakar and other PDP candidates because the APC is a fraudulent party that should be sent to the political wilderness.
He said the big oil state will overwhelmingly vote for Atiku because they want a leader that will make an impact in the state, adding, ‘’Atiku will bring back the Industrial Estate in Ahoada and also revive our ports. The Buhari administration lacks knowledge of the fundamentals of development, hence they must be voted out’’.
He announced the award of a contract for the construction of Government Secondary School, while the reconstruction of Western Ahoada County High School will be completed before the election, stating that the process for the siting of the two faculties of the state university at Ahoada is on track, and that the project has been included in the 2019 Budget.
PDP State Chairman; Felix Obuah expressed happiness that Ahoada people the good works of Governor Wike and have agreed to reciprocate during the forthcoming elections.
He presented the party’s flag Rivers-West Senatorial candidate, Mrs Betty Apiafi, Abua/Odual/Ahoada East Federal Constituency’s Solomon Bob, Ahoada East Constituency 1, Chibodum Ezu and Ahoada East Constituency 2, Edison Ehie.
While Solomon Bob said the people are out to celebrate Governor Wike by standing with him all the way, Edison Ehie said the visit is an assurance that the people will vote the PDP. He said the people irrespective of political affiliation support Governor Wike.
He said that the youths will defend their votes, noting that nobody will steal votes in the area. He said total mobilisation has been carried out to ensure 100 percent victory.
Director General of the state Campaign Council, Ambassador Desmond Akawor said the mammoth crowd depicts the support of Ekpeye people for Governor Wike, adding that the governor’s bold entry into Ahoada East Local Government Area is due to his outstanding projects delivery in the areas of health and education.
Ahoada East Local Government Chairman, Benjamin Eke, said the people will work hard to ensure the total victory of PDP in all the forthcoming elections.
While the party chapter Chairman, Sunny Ideozu said there was no other political party in the area because the people appreciate the key projects of the governor, Water Resources Commissioner, Prof Kaniye Ebeku said that the people are happy to have the performing governor visit them.
Highpoint of the rally was the defection of the few APC members to the PDP.