The spokesperson for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential campaign in Rivers State, Leloonu Nwibubasa has advised the State Governor, Nyesom Wike to stop feeding the people of the state with “misinformation.”
Mr Nwibubasa, who served as commissioner in Governor Wike’s administration, was reacting to statements made by the governor at the inauguration of Rivers PDP campaign council.
Mr Wike, in his remark at the event held in Port Harcourt on Monday, said that the PDP presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, picked people from Rivers into the presidential campaign council without his contribution.
The governor said people from the state serving as members of the presidential campaign council were “enemies of Rivers”.
“I have never seen how people would disrespect a state like Rivers (State) and go and choose those who are enemies of the state without the contributions from us,” Mr Wike had said.
Although Mr Wike did not mention names of those he described as “enemies” of the state, this newspaper earlier reported that Mr Atiku appointed former national chairman of the party, Uche Secondus, from Rivers, as his technical adviser.
Two former deputy speakers of the House of Representatives, Chibudom Nwuche and Austin Opara, from Rivers, are members of the presidential campaign council.
Others are a senator, George Sekibo, former senator, Lee Maeba and George Sekibo and former transportation minister under Olusegun Obasanjo, Abiye Sekibo, as well as a retired army general,
Reacting to the governor’s statements, Mr Nwibubasa, who is a former commissioner in Mr Wike’s administration, said the governor’s claim was incorrect.
“Rather it’s the governor that denied Rivers people more representation in the campaign council by refusing to send in nominees,” Mr Nwibubasa said in a statement sent to PREMIUM TIMES on Tuesday.
‘Enemies of Rivers supported your ill-fated presidential bid’
Mr Nwibubasa reminded the governor that those he labelled as “enemies of the state” supported his ill-fated presidential bid and governorship bid back in 2015.
“It is a great surprise and also of grave concern that Governor Wike openly declared our leaders, fathers and kinsmen ‘enemies of the state’ for their decision to support Atiku.
“Rivers People must recall that a few months ago, the same ‘enemies of the state’ traversed the length and breadth of this country, risking their lives on land and in the air to help Governor Wike in his ill-fated presidential bid.
“They gave their best. If their best could not push Governor Wike through, should they also join Governor Wike to destroy the party that made them, With Governor Wike being the highest beneficiary?
“Also remember, that though Mr Wike was not the most qualified to be governor of Rivers State in 2015, more so for reasons bothering on equity and fairness, (former) Governor Rotimi Amaechi having done two terms from the same Ikwerre ethnic group, these men who are now named enemies of the state for the love of PDP, for party cohesion and unity supported Mr Wike in no small measure to be governor of Rivers State.”
Mr Nwibubasa urged the people of Rivers to support Atiku, adding that no other presidential candidate has the state’s interest than the PDP presidential candidate.
He said Atiku has created over 750,000 jobs in Rivers through his various investments in the state.
Mr Wike has been in a political battle with Atiku since the PDP presidential primary was concluded, which the former vice president of Nigeria, won.
The Rivers governor is leading a group of four other governors and other party chieftains who are demanding the removal of the PDP National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, to achieve a “regional balance” since Messrs Ayu and Atiku are both from the north.
Mr Wike’s allies who were appointed into the PDP presidential campaign council last month announced their withdrawal from the council.
Members of the group also boycotted the presidential campaign flag-off of the party. They are adamant that Mr Ayu must be replaced with a southerner.