By Joseph Edegbo
Rivers State governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has described as unfortunate the unguarded public comments credited to respectable party members against him after the conduct of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential primaries on 29th/30th May, 2022.
Governor Wike maintained that the right thing such persons should have done, particularly the PDP presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar or the PDP national chairman, Senator Iyorchia Ayu, would have been to reach out to him, but they have not.
The Rivers State governor made the accusation while speaking with journalists at the international wing of the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa, in Ikwerre Local Government Area, shortly after his arrival from Spain on Friday.
Governor Wike pointed to how Alhaji Atiku Abubakar used the occasion of the unveiling of PDP vice presidential candidate, Governor Ifeanyi Okowa of Delta State, and his appearance on a national television to lie against him.
“But there comes a time that people will understand and know the true facts. So, obviously, whether I will speak is not in doubt, to let Nigerians know the actual truth. Having known the truth, whatever they decide to do with it is left for Nigerians.
“Because, you can imagine, the presidential candidate of the PDP Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, when he unveiled vice presidential candidate, no right thinking lover of this party would say that the speech he made on that day was fair. Forget about the favour seekers. Forget about the scavengers. But I never reacted to it. That is because this party belongs to all of us.
“Thereafter, he appeared on Arise Television, see the statement he made. So many lies were told and you said I should not react to some of those issues. That would not be fair.”
Governor Wike explained that after the PDP primaries he returned to Rivers State to focus on fulfilling the remaining promises that he made to Rivers people.
He said, already a number of completed projects have already been outlined for inauguration and when that was done, he would respond to all the lies peddled against him.
“Assuming today, I’m not alive, obviously what they have said would be accepted as the truth. Look at his (Atiku) attack dogs, Sule Lamido, Babaginda Aliyu, Maina Waziri. Look at the statements they issued. Look at the abuses they rained on me, but I never reacted.
“And Nigerians will ask, you mean these things happened? So, it is important that as a person and for my own future, and for those who rally around me to say, look, this is not fair. So, I will make sure that I will react to them, line by line of the statements made by Alhaji Atiku Abubakar himself and his attack dogs.”
Governor Wike asserted that he contested the presidential primary squarely and emerged in the second position so he will not tolerate being disparaged.
He emphasised on speaking to lovers of the party by putting the record straight so that they will know who is being truthful.
“Look at it, a presidential candidate who believes that he wants to win election, and somebody who contested fiercely with him that has never raised any issue. I just kept quiet, just minded my business, to see how my state can move forward.
“But everyday, his people come up to attack me, to say one thing or the other. That’s quite unfair and so I should let Nigerians know at the appropriate time, that will be after the commissioning of projects that we have lined up.
“We will say look this is not correct, so that posterity, history will be on our side that we have been able to keep the record straight. So, nobody should be in doubt whether I am going to speak on the issue of PDP, issues of the primaries and other related matters.
“Nigerians will know what happen, Nigerians will know those who love this country, Nigerians will know what went behind. And that is to assure you am going to speak on that.”
Governor Wike clarified that Senator Bukola Saraki met with him in Spain, but said he was not sent by Alhaji Atiku, so nobody should think in such direction.
In any case, Governor Wike wondered why Alhaji Atiku Abubakar who visited him at his place to solicit his support does not know the way to the house he once visited.
Governor Wike also said that he is not aware of any committee that has been set up by PDP or the party’s presidential candidate to reach out to him.
“I want to tell members of the public, as far as I am concern, I love this party, I have remained committed and I have been able to play my part. I’m not talking of leaving this party.
“I am not one of those who are running around presidential candidate to say I want to be this. I am not one of those favour seekers, scavengers looking for how they will survive.
“After the commissioning of projects that we have lined up, we will be able to speak to Nigerians and tell them what happened. It doesn’t matter who is involved.
“I am not a slave, and I will not be a slave, am a free born of this country. I must be able to say how things are, whether is suits you, or it does not suits you, is immaterial.
“So, members of the public should please bear with us that we must put the records straight. If we don’t put the records straight, history will not be happy with us.”