Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has issued what looks like cheering news to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) family by assuring he was staying put in the party.
He made it clear he was staying put to fight. He also seemed to hit hard at the former Vice President and Presidential flag-bearer of the party, Atiku Abubakar, saying he was not like those who lost at the Eagles Square in 2014 and fled the PDP to the other party (All Progressives Congress, APC).
Wike spoke while addressing the stakeholders of the PDP in the Government House where he declared that he was not defecting anywhere but that he was rather staying to fight for inclusiveness, unity, peace and justice. He said he was rather interested in preserving the sanity of the party and would stay back.
Throwing pebbles at Atiku, Wike said he was a man of character, unlike those who he said could not keep their words but walked out of the party at the Eagle Square in Abuja in 2014.
“One thing I have always told people is, if anybody is thinking, doing anything to think that we will leave PDP, foul. We will do the fight in the party.
“Did they remain to fight inside the party? But we remained, they ran away. Now, there is a fight in the party, we will not run. We will fight it in this party. Those who run away from fight are weak people. We will not. So, everybody should know this is the state where we are, so that nobody tells you all kinds of stories.”
Crux of the matter:
On the crux of the troubles in the party, Wike insisted that the constitution of the party clearly stated that elective and party offices must be zoned which, should be respected.
He wondered why the former PDP BoT chairman would be pressurised to resign and the PDP national chairman s excusing himself from keeping to doing what is right.
“You have taken presidential candidate, you have taken party chairman, you have also taken the D.G (director general) of the campaign. We are talking about party politics. Decisions are made by the presidential candidate, chairman of the party and the D.G of the campaign.
“They are telling you they told the chairman of the BOT to resign. So, you know there is a problem. You said he should go and resign. You can put pressure on him to resign when his tenure hasn’t come to an end. But you cannot put pressure on the chairman to resign. You think at our level you will deceive us. You’ll tell us stories.”
Gov Wike said in 2015 the FG allegedly used the military to invade Rivers State, interfered with and even annulled elections, but was resisted.
The governor recalled he made sure the senatorial result for Rivers East was announced that delivered George Thompson Sekibo and that of Rivers West that produced Betty Apiafi.
Wike regretted that despite the risk taken to deliver them, the same people were now in Abuja allegedly plotting against him.
The Rivers State governor also clarified that he never promised anybody governorship ticket of the PDP despite the pressure some leaders mounted on him or attempts made to divide the State House of Assembly.
Wike said though he didn’t clinch the PDP presidential ticket, he actually made a good account of himself at the primary.
The governor informed that by next week, Rivers State PDP campaign team will be unveiled and the campaign pattern adopted will be based on each local government peculiarity.
Vows that all PDP candidates will win
Governor Wike emphasised that all PDP candidates in the State will be returned elected by Rivers people who are satisfied with the performance of his administration.
“We will take all. We are taking all because Rivers people are happy with what we have done in this state. We have not only provided infrastructure, we have also defended the interest of Rivers State.”
He explained that it took courage and firmness for him to protect the interest and assets of Rivers State without compromising it with politics.
Governor Wike explaining that besides securing a refund of money illegally deducted by the federal government over the Police Trust Fund, his administration recovered oil wells wrongly ceded to Imo State and is collecting the accruing revenue from the oil wells in disputed area between Rivers and Bayelsa States.
The governor stated that the federal government won’t be able to use the army and the police in the 2023 election because Nigerians will vote for political parties on the basis of their performance.
Gov Wike cautioned party members who want to be moles and work against the PDP because they were not given the ticket that they sought.
The governor urged party members to be steadfast because God is on their side, and since they have not known defeat, PDP cannot be defeated in 2023 general election in Rivers State.
Where you go, we go – PDP state chairman
In his response, State Chairman of the PDP, Desmond Akawor, said the party in the state has already passed a vote of confidence on Gov Wike for the way he has piloted the affairs of the State.
He commended the governor for the consistent delivery of projects, defending the interest of the State, and declared that they will continue to follow the leadership that he provides.