By PRECIOUS IBINABO DAVIDS, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Chapter of All Progressives Congress (APC) has described
the unprecedented and monumental gathering of the traditional rulers, political leaders, sons and daughters of Ikwerre extraction in Rivers
State on 13th January 2018 at Isiokpo, the traditional headquarters of
the Ikwerre Ethnic Nationality to honour one of their most illustrious
sons, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi the erstwhile Governor of
Rivers State and the incumbent Minister of Transportation as
historical, epochal and monumental.
“This great event organised by the Ikwerre Youth Movement (IYM) the
foremost socio-cultural organisation in Ikwerre land was to solemnize
the Chieftaincy title earlier conferred on Chief Amaechi by the
Ikwerre Traditional Rulers abiding by all the traditional rites of the
ancient Ikwerre heritage as “EZE OCHI ALIRI 1 of IKWERRE Land” which
means the person who stands tall to take on and ward off any challenge
in a family or Community. Briefly, he is the “Redeemer of His people”
(Ikwerre) or “The wise Defender of the Ikwerre kingdom”
The event unprecedented in recent times in the annals of social and
political gathering in Rivers State commenced with 21 traditional gun
shots to welcome Amaechi and over a million of persons from Ikwerre
the largest ethnic group in Rivers State with friends and supporters
to accord honour to this great son of Nigeria and to thank President
Muhammadu Buhari for the honour done to their son and Leader of Rivers
The Organisers through the President General of Ikwerre Youths
Movement (IYM) and one of the greatest grass-root Mobilisers from
Rivers State, Hon. Azubuike Chikere Wanjoku expressed their profound
gratitude to President Buhari for assisting their son to demonstrate
to the entire world the stuff he is made up with as a great leader in
the mould of Zik Awo, Sir Abubakar Tafawa Balewa and Sir Ahmadu Bello.
in short Amaechi is our own Zik, Awo, Balawa and Saraduna combined
the party highlighted.
The party in a press statement circulated on Monday by Chief Eze
Chukwuemeka Eze the SSA Media and Public Affairs Consultant to the APC
Rivers State Chairman, Dr Ibiamu Davies Ikanya further described Chief
Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi the Eze Ochi Aliri 1 of Ikwerre land as a
breaker of records stating that the Holy Bible as reflected in the
gospel of Mark 6:4, “A prophet is honoured everywhere except in his
own hometown and among his relatives and his own family” (New Living
Translation) but Amaechi with the event of today have dusted this
truism with the millions of Ikwerre sons and daughters his brethren
agreeing as one people to honour him for his sterling and outstanding
inputs towards the emancipation of the Ikwerre people and for becoming
a great Iroko and one of the pillars through which the politics of
Nigeria currently rotates.
With this title and recognition Amaechi becomes the most influential
Ikwerre man on planet earth.
The party further stated that Chief Amaechi stands out as the only
Nigerian that was a Speaker of a State House of Assembly for eight
years, Chairman of the Speakers’ Forum of Nigeria, Governor of Rivers
State for eight years and two term Chairman of the Nigeria Governors
Forum and most historically led an opposition political party to
unseat a sitting President in Nigeria.
The party explained that, today, Chief Amaechi is not only changing
the face of Transportation in Nigeria as the Minister of
Transportation but stands out as one of the key and influential member
of President Buhari’ s political Team.
Refers in some quarters as the Lion of Niger Delta Politics, this
great son of Rivers State has being reappointed to lead APC to victory
come 2019 as the Director General of the Presidential Campaign
Council. No son of Rivers State has achieved such feats to warrant his
ethnic tribe to have so honoured him in this manner.
Not minding that the incumbent Governor of Rivers State, Chief Nyesom
Ezebunwo Wike is of the Ikwerre extraction but the Ikwerre people in
the event pleaded with the Eze Ochi Aliri 1 of Ikwerre to “please,
introduce the APC candidate for the 2019 gubernatorial election and
2019 shall be a walk over as Wike has proved what it means not to be a
Overwhelmed with the mammoth crowd that attended the event coupled
with the resolution by the Ikwerre people to honour Amaechi and to
elect an APC candidate by 2019, Governor Wike was so irked to a
boiling point that he immediately ordered the sack of three of the
caretaker Committee Chairmen of Ikwerre extraction for not scuttling
the reception. The unfortunate sacked Chairmen that earned the wrath
of Gov. Wike were that of Obio-Akpor, Port Harcourt and Ikwerre. The
Emouha Chairman was spared the sack hammer as he made attempt to
scuttle the event but his attempt could not make any impact as the
reception was held without any hitch. It is based on this development
that the party blasted Gov Wike for this childish move of sacking
these men forgotten that 75% of those in his cabinet were all
Amaechi’s product including himself as sacking them will not save him
from the woes that await him come 2019.
Without mincing words, the party highlighted that Ikwerre ethnic group
comprising of Port Harcourt and three other Local Government Areas of
the State is the largest ethnic group in Rivers State and most
importantly one of the major deciding factors on who becomes the River
State Governor come 2019.
To the Ikwerre Youth Movement, “Amaechi is our liberator. He is the
man who broke the shackles of political timidity and wrenched the
chains of economic naivety in our domain. This colossus of a man
brought political freedom to our very doorsteps and we will henceforth
stand by him in all his political calculations.
The elated and excited Amaechi who expressed his appreciation
reiterated, “If anybody on earth says I have sat with him at any
meeting to plan how to kill someone, that person should step forward.
I swear before God and those of you here, 90% of those who benefitted
from Scholarships under me, I never knew them. President Muhammadu
Buhari will ensure that the 2019 elections will be free and fair. I
urge all our people to register and obtain their Voters’ Cards to
enable them to exercise their franchise as the 2019 elections,
especially the governorship, are our last battle. If we win, we will
take over Rivers State. If we lose in the election, we will go home
and rest. We will not impose any candidate. Anybody who will go for
any position, like chairmanship, should go for primaries. Anybody who
wins will be the party’s candidate. The President said that there
would be no rigging during the 2019 elections. It is to our advantage.
As Ikwerre people, we must give out the power to other ethnic
nationalities. But we will be in a position to take it back at any
time. Your future is in your hands.”
The party expressed their unflinching gratitude to all Rivers State
people that attended the event including the amiable State Chairman,
Chief Dr Davies Ibiamu Ikanya, Senator Andrew Uchendu, Dr Dakuku
Peterside the Director General of NIMASA and gubernatorial candidate
of the party in 2015 with his running mate, Hon. Honourable Asita.
Chief Victor Giadom, Engr. Ngerebara Sampson, Lauretta Onochie, SA to
President Muhammadu Buhari, Hon Leyii Kwanee former Deputy Speaker of
Rivers State House of Assembly, Hon Fred Mbombo Igwe, Hon. Tolofari
George former Commissioner for Transport in Rivers State, the hard
working Party Secretary , Chief Emeka Bekee, AkpoBari Celestine one
of the best brains from Ogoni, Chief Oby Ndukwe and countless other
leaders that witnessed the event.