By PRECIOUS IBINABO DAVIDS, Port Harcourt
A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers state, Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, has written off recent call for peace by the state governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, as mere ‘play to the gallery’, saying his message fell below the expected.
Eze’s message was contained in a statement issued and circulated to the media in Port Harcourt on Monnday.
Chief Eze, who has been very vocal about the deteriorating economic and political situation in the state, said Governor Wike’s message, which was passed through a State broadcast, among other deficiencies, failed to address the critical issues bedeviling the State, especially the issue of insecurity and loss of value for lives, adding that the starting point for the Governor ought to have been an unreserved apology to Rivers people because he (Wike) engineered the state of insecurity, which had destroyed most communities in the State so far.
Eze reiterated that contrary to the erroneous impression as contained in his State broadcast, Amaechi have no case that Wike’s Attorney General have to withdraw or recommend discountenance as it is hypocritical to sit on a seat of the Governor unjustly and look for who to hold peace parley with.
Eze also advised Wike to leave the Minister of Transportation and his predecessor as Governor of the state, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, out of the causes of his woes, adding that neither the Minister nor the APC was the source and cause of the current state of misgovernment ongoing in Rivers state currently, saying the governor had, through his lack of vision and ineptitude, turned the once economically bubbling, secure and peaceful state into a hotbed of cultism, killings, kidnapping and an unsafe haven, alleging that those responsible for the criminal activities are those the governor and his party are giving backing to.
While advising the governor to quit his latter days sermon on peaceful coexistence and save his energies to face the law, which will decide his fate as beneficiary of a flawed electoral exercise, Eze lamented that the governor’s misplacement of priorities, saying “it is sad that instead of Governor Wike addressing prevalent and challenging issues facing the State, sadly he dwells so much on the crisis he ignited in APC in Rivers State and where it benefits his political manoeuvre.
“One would have expected him to address and proffer solutions on the serious issues facing Rivers state, like how the state has become a slaughter house where indigenes are slaughtered and beheaded as if lives no longer count in the state. While Wike was reading his state broadcast, medical doctors were protesting non-payment of their seven months salaries, even as pensioners and civil servants are at a loss on who to present their plight of non-payment of their salaries and pensions for several months to”, Eze bemoaned.
He commended Wike for highlighting the imperatives of peace in the state, but counselled “pursuance of peace without social justice, mapping of strategies on the creation of jobs for our teeming youths, strategies on elimination of hunger, amelioration of the plights of the civil servants, pensioners and most importantly strategies on restoration of security in the state is to me pursuance of peace of the graveyard that will yield no fruits”.
Eze pointed out that Wike made a mess of his ‘well thought out’ call for reconciliation by not addressing any of these sensitive issues highlighted above, but instead, in his usual manner, referred to Rotimi Amaechi as a factional leader of the APC and in the same vein wants him to join his government by giving it credibility, knowing very well that he usurped the office in connivance with INEC officials.
Eze, who said neither Amaechi, nor any other leader within the APC in the state had created the atmosphere of rejection that Wike currently face with Rivers people, whom he recalled had voted massively against him, but had been muscled in by the INEC. Explaining further, Eze highlighted some 17 facts as some of the reasons Rivers people will continue to mobilize against the second term of Governor Wike:
1. While lamenting that Wike’s idea of running a government is both crude and retrogressive, especially through the abuse of propaganda and the use of force, Eze said the governor had distorted the just and natural order of rotational leadership in the state, recalling “the politics of Rivers state is based on the Upland/Riverine dichotomy and the upland section of the State, through Dr Peter Odili, Dr Amaechi and Chief Wike, had governed the state in the last 20 years, to the detriment of the riverine section of the state.
“Sadly Wike, through propaganda, wants to prolong the woes of this section by ensuring with his phantom victory this section of the state, comprising great Rivers sons and daughters, will never smell the seat of power for the next 30 years. God will not allow the machinations of Wike and his devious cohorts to frustrate the dream of the riverine section of the state to govern”, he said.
2. Destruction of the fish farms created by the adminstrstion of Amaechi that would have created employment and bring foreign exchange to the state, imagine Anambra exporting bitter leaf and ugu to earn over $4.5m.
3. Cancellation of oversea scholarship initiated by the adminstration of Amaechi to offer qualitative education to the youths of Rivers State and make the State the bedrock of higher development of Nigeria.
4. Cultist taking over the nook and cranny of Rivers state as the only thing the state exports now is militants and beheading. This was the menace eridcated by the adminstration of Amaechi.
5. Do you know that over 90% of garri we eat in Rivers state now are from neighboring States as women and farmers can’t asses their farms anymore because of fear of being kidnapped or beheaded?
6. No bursary payment for students of Rivers origin.
7. No investment or investors have come to Rivers State since 2015 because the governor brought TV stations to show the world that even the government house is not safe
8. No meaningful project apart from local government project been carried out by governor who claimed to be Mr. Project.
(9) High unemployment rate.
(10) For making the rank first in the world misery index.
(11) Lack of human capital development policy.
(12 No award of scholarship to qualified students of the state.
(13) Promotion of criminality and cultism (145 no comprehensive health policy
(14) Destruction of amaechi’s legacy programmes in agriculture, health and human empowerment
(15). Failed promises like the promised of employing 10,000 teachers and 4,000 non teaching staffs, giving interest free loan to civil servants that never come to pass, payment of 13th month salary that never saw the light of the day.
16) Lack of good governance
(17) Lack of security in the state
(18). Apart from the above, It is sad and unfortunate that due to the acts of misgovernance by the Wike administration in the state, every political commentator now describes the politics of Rivers state in the negative: a government that couldn’t pay the salaries of her civil servants or pay the pension of her pensioners. A government that has turned the famous Garden City associated with Port Harcourt, now known as the Garbage City of Nigeria. A government that has destroyed the education, agriculture, health and other sectors of the state. A government without plan for the future of her youths, but will rather prefer to arm and turn her youths into a security challenge for the State.
(19). Turning the Garden city into a dustbin city. In this, Dr Suku a son of Rivers State who is based in London captures the pathetic state Governor Wike have placed Rivers State in these words, “The air that goes into our bodies in Port Harcourt is toxic, the streets dirty with rubbish piled along the streets, unbearable smell if you are just coming into the country and the stationary rubbish trucks full of decaying trash. And yet people are celebrating Wike’s win. Port Harcourt is a dangerous city to live”
20. Turning Rivers State as the capital state of poverty and according to ALIKO DANGOTE, Governor Nyesom Wike is responsible for high poverty rate in Rivets State
21. Turning Port Harcourt from its former glorious Garden City status to its present sad state of Garbage City of Nigeria. According to Dr Suku a son of Rivets State living in London, “Rhe air that goes into our bodies in Port Harcourt is toxic; the streets dirty with rubbish piled along the streets, unbearable smell if you are just coming into the country and the stationary rubbish trucks full of decaying trash. And yet people are celebrating Wike’s win. Port Harcourt is a dangerous city to live.
“One can now understand why it is becoming a religion in Rivers state to get Wike kicked out as soon as possible”, he said.