The Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has announced what it called “the formal burial of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the State.
We warmly congratulate the 85,500 patriotic citizens of the State who empowered us to make this announcement through their physical presence at APC Port Harcourt Mega Rally held last Saturday, 25th October, 2014, at Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium. It was a rally during which 85,500 people struggled to see the man described as the hero of the new political dispensation in Nigeria – Rt. Hon. Chibuke Rotimi Amaechi, Governor of Rivers State and Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF). It was a day set aside to celebrate the epochal judgement of the Supreme Court that stands as a mystery to many political watchers – a verdict which ensured that Rt. Hon. Amaechi, who was denied his victory by the then PDP leadership, was handed over the mantle of leadership of Rivers State on 25th October, 2007.
A statement by Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, SSA media and public affairs to the state chairman, APC Rivers State said “ Instead of the 50,000 expected by the organisers, over 85,500 eventually attended the rally, with 46,000 seated, 25,000 standing and 14,500 standing outside the stadium main bowl but participated fully by following the programme through the giant television sets and loudspeakers placed at strategic places outside the stadium by the oragnisers. Instructively, most of these great sons and daughters of Rivers State that attended the historic rally sponsored themselves to the event, thus practically demonstrating their great love for Amaechi and APC. Joining this large throng of Rivers people to celebrate seven years of Amaechism were many other Nigerians, including all APC presidential aspirants – a former Head of State, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd.); ex-Vice-President Atiku Abubakar; the Governor of Kano State, Musa Rabiu Kwankwaso; his Imo State counterpart, Rochas Okorocha and LEADERSHIP Publisher, Sam Nda-Isaiah. Also in attendance were the National Chairman of the APC, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun; Governor of Kwara State, Abdulfatah Ahmed, and his predecessor, Senator Bukola Saraki; as well as a former Governor of Ekiti State, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, and his predecessor, Engr. Segun Oni, the Deputy National Chairman, South, of APC; lawmakers and other eminent personalities.
“The event was used to celebrate the seven golden years of the administration of Governor of Amaechi in Rivers State that witnessed unprecedented growth in all sectors of the economy of the state, particularly in the areas of Education, Health, Agriculture, roads and other physical infrastructure, the formal commissioning of one of the best stadia in Nigeria, the 46-seater Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium Complex that boasts world-class facilities for football, swimming, handball and several other sports.
The climax of the event was the formal burial of PDP in Rivers State, with Hon. Emmanuel Deeyah Nwika, one-time Deputy Speaker of Rivers State House of Assembly with Gov Amaechi as the Speaker then, one-time Commissioner of Finance and two-time member of the Federal House of Representatives from 2003 to 2011, decamping from PDP to APC with the 5,800 remnants of PDP in Rivers State.
According to Hon. Deeyah Nwika, “with today’s event, PDP ceases to exist in Rivers State probably only in the minds of few hungry fellows still singing the praises of confused Chief Nyesom Wike whose vision is just to take Rivers State to the days of insecurity that we have passed.”
Rivers APC deeply appreciates all the goodwill messages received at the epochal rally and fully associates itself with the following words of Governor Amaechi at the rally: “They (PDP leaders) have made too much noise. President Jonathan says we exist only on posters and billboards. So, we brought a large billboard for him.If the President is not watching the rally, they will give him security report.This stadium is 46,000 seating capacity. I built it. It was built by me. One of them campaigning for Rivers governorship (Chief Nyesom Wike, the immediate past Minister of State for Education) was the contractor to do the roads. He abandoned the roads and took N3 billion and left. Now, he wants to be governor. I challenge them to an integrity test. Any of them from Abuja to Rivers State, I challenge them to an integrity test. I have worked with them. I have their records and their (records) are in the Office of the Governor.We have developed 750 megawatts, but the problem is Federal Government not allowing us to distribute electricity.
“We were to give Port Harcourt water. As I am talking to you today, the Minister of Finance (Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala) has refused to move the file again back to Executive Council for approval, so that you can have water. They do not care for you. They want you to die of water-borne diseases. Punish them with your votes. Punish PDP with your votes. He (Jonathan) is our son; why can’t we have water?
“The problem we have is that the EFCC (Economic and Financial Crimes Commission) is no longer working. Corruption is at its industrial scale. Thieves are thieves because we now have an industry called corruption.”
APC said “We join the Rivers Governor to laud members of the National Assembly from the State who have wisely chosen to stand by our Governor. We are happy that eight members ofthe House of Representatives from the State moved with him to APC, while the rest betrayed him and will surely be punished by Rivers people with their votes in 2015.
Continuing, the party said”We also join the NGF Chairman in thanking Rivers people for keeping him as Governor and standing by him. We fully associate ourselves with Amaechi’s words when he stated: “They said the reason why the President (Jonathan) is not performing in Rivers State is because he is quarrelling with the Governor of Rivers State.Okay, what is the quarrel between the Governor of Akwa Ibom State and the Governor of Cross River State that the road from Akwa Ibom State to Cross River State is abandoned? Are they quarrelling too? It is more of lack of performance.When the President (Jonathan) spoke in Benin, he spoke in a stadium that was less than 20,000-seating capacity. When TAN (Transformation Ambassadors of Nigeria) held their rally in Port Harcourt, they held it at the 16,000-capacity Elekahia Stadium and this was a South-South rally. The rally in Benin was South-South. The rally in Port Harcourt was South-South. This one (APC mega rally) is Port Harcourt rally.Do you remember Ebola?
“To show you how much the President hates us, he visited Lagos; did he visit Rivers State? He did not care. He wanted all of us to die, but I took it as a challenge and said none of us would die. Whatever it will take, I will do what I can by God’s grace to protect Rivers people.
“Can you see our airport (Port Harcourt International Airport)? The president lands at the airport. But see how we look like refugees. They say there is no light at the airport. What did we do to them? We gave him the highest votes in the country and the punishment we get for given him the highest vote is operation nothing. So, APC is the solution to protect our interest. We must go there to vote out the PDP. It is not about our son.
“They tell you that you should not vote for these people, because they are Hausa people, they are Muslims, but the refinery in Rivers State was built and commissioned by Tafawa Balewa, a northerner. Shehu Shagari started NAFCON, Ibrahim Babangida commissioned it. IBB started the Eleme Petrochemical Company, Sani Abacha completed it. They are all northerners; they are all Muslims. NLNG was started and completed by Abacha and he is a northerner and a Muslim. Bonny NLNG, NDDC, Niger Delta Ministry were established by northerners.
“In fact, when late President Umaru Musa Yar’Adua was alive, Niger Delta Ministry was working; now it is only one item: East-West Road, and they say he (President Jonathan) is our brother. He is not my brother. My brother is the man who delivers on his services for me. If the President says he is our brother, let him call one project (his administration has embarked upon in Rivers State).”
Rivers APC also thanked “ APC leaders, including our presidential aspirants, for attending the Port Harcourt Mega Rally and for the message of hope they gave to Nigerians during the rally. For example, Buhari said that APC, from next year, would provide security and development in Nigeria, while Atiku urged Nigerians to vote for APC in 2015 to eradicate poverty and ensure steady electricity, good roads and good schools, among others. On their part, Okorocha assured that the APC would provide the best presidential candidate with vision for Nigeria, not based on religion or tribe, while Kwankwaso noted that Amaechi is ensuring peace and stability in Nigeria, as the Chairman of NGF, and Nda-Isaiah stated that God gave Rivers people a good Governor in Amaechi, declaring that he had never seen the kind of crowd he was seeing at the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium. Odigie-Oyegun assured that the APC would wipe out corruption in Nigeria and that APC is in charge of Rivers State, contrary to the claim of PDP leaders, stating that the progress in the state could be replicated at the centre and all over Nigeria.
APC urged “ the Nigerian electorate to save our nation from PDP’s misrule in 2015 by punishing the PDP and President Goodluck Jonathan with our votes in 2015, in order to bring about the much-desired change. The power to bring about a better Nigeria is in our hands. Let’s use it wisely in 2015 and end the suffocating circle of doom and gloom occasioned by the visionless leadership of President Jonathan.”