BusinessDay

Wike threatens block vote against those who ‘despise’ Rivers people

Gov Nyesom Wike who is still furious over his being overlooked as both the presidential candidate of his party and the running mate has threatened to deploy Rivers State block vote against those he accused of despising the state.
Wike, who maintained that the way he is regarded in the political space mirrors the way Rivers State is being treated, threatened to pay those who despise Rivers in their coin when voting comes.
Many people hold that the governor’s statement is directed at the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential flag bearer.
Wike who invited Babajide Sanwoolu, the Lagos State governor and chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to commission a new flyover in the state, said the dynamics of contemporary politics has made it unpopular to just gift votes away without the assurance of derivable benefit for the people.
“If you say Rivers State does not matter, Rivers State will tell you that you don’t matter at the appropriate time. If you don’t like us, we will not like you. If you like us, we will like you,” Wike said.
“Nobody will use our votes for nothing. Our votes will matter and Rivers State must benefit from anybody that we are going to support.
“Politics now is no longer just voting for somebody, it is about what you will do for the people of Rivers State.”
Wike pointed to how difficult it will be for any conspirators to upset the voting pattern of Rivers State and support for the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
The governor reiterated that those who looted the treasury of the State will not be supported to become governor of Rivers State.
“My guest from Lagos State, let nobody tell you the story that anybody will come here to win as governor of Rivers State. It will not happen,” he added.
“Those who looted the treasury of the State will not come here to be governor of Rivers State and I have challenged them.
“I am fully in charge. I am not the kind of governor people will go to Abuja and hold meetings against. I am fully in charge here.”
Wike also challenged those he said were envious of his development strides to rather show what capacity they have by executing projects and invite renown persons to inaugurate them.

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He explained that inviting the Lagos State governor is not the first time persons of other political parties were invited to inaugurate projects in Rivers State. He pointed to the benefits of such invitations, saying it served as peer review.
Sanwo-Olu, who inaugurated the Orochiri-Worokwu (Waterlines) Flyover, commended Wike for his strong commitment to the delivery of physical infrastructure in Rivers State.
Sanwo-Olu said though he and Wike belong to different political persuasions, the invitation extended to him sends a very strong message that politicians and political leaders can come together across political and ideological divides, for the good of the people.
“There is also a lot that we can learn from one another, and experience that we can translate from one part of the country to the other,” he stated as he added that they all were in governance to touch the lives of the people for good; to deliver to them the dividends of democracy.
Describing the project, the Rivers State Commissioner for Works, Dakorinama George-Kelly, said it has been completed on schedule with specified quality. “This flyover bridge will decongest traffic along the Port Harcourt -Aba Expressway because right from the Bori Park Flyover down to Eastern By-pass, there will be no traffic congestion. So, there will be ease of doing business around Port Harcourt and Rivers people will benefit from it.”
In his speech, Regional Manager of Julius Berger Nigeria PLC, Juergen Fischer, noted that history had been made with the opening for public use of the 7th Flyover awarded to them for construction.
He thanked Governor Wike for the trust reposed in Julius Berger Nigeria PLC to handle such huge projects for the State Government.
Meanwhile, Gov Wike has accused some politicians from different political parties of recruiting cultists for 2023. He has threatened to demolish hotels where such meetings were going, saying he got intelligence on this.
Citizens have reacted, some saying he too did the same in 2014, while others said it was a ploy to destroy hotels belonging to the opposition.
The publicity secretary of the APC in the state, Chris Finebone, has advised the never to demolish hotels of APC members.
Gov Wike is facing opposition from many quarters including in his own party in the state where some Atiku Abubakar supporters have risen to draw a line.

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