Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike has stated that President Muhammadu Buhari’s proposed visit to the state may be aimed at reviving the fortunes of the All Progressives Congress (APC) that is dead in the state.
Flagging off the reconstruction of Egbelu Street and link roads in Rumuodara community in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area yesterday, Governor Wike said that the Federal Government has not informed him of the President’s visit and the reason behind his visit.
He said: “I hear they say that the President is coming to our state. I have not been told the President is coming and why he is coming. He has the right to come to any state.
”Maybe, the President is coming to make sure that he will improve the fortunes of the APC that is dead in Rivers State.
”Apart from Jesus Christ, we don’t know of anyone who has risen a dead thing. APC is a dead party in Rivers State. No matter how you fast and pray, it will never wake up”.
Governor Wike charged Rivers people not to be bothered by the politics or otherwise of the visit, because the state is very peaceful.
”Let nobody bother him or herself that the President is coming for security reasons. We don’t have security challenges in the state.
”We have never had herdsmen killings or crisis in the state , except when some criminals tried to disrupt the peace and they were checked. We resolved that challenge. “
He stated that there is no state in this country where kidnappers and armed robbers are not operating. He said if President Muhammadu Buhari is visiting because of kidnappers and armed robbers, then, he should visit all the 36 states.
He, however, noted that as the state that produces the wealth that supports the country,the President is welcome to visit the wealth producers of the nation.
According to him: “Since the administration has abandoned Rivers State for three years, this visit may be a blessing in disguise. The President may use the visit to complete the Port Harcourt International Airport, the neglected East West road, the neglected sea ports and the rejected Port Harcourt-Aba road”.
Speaking on the road projects in Rumuodara community, Governor Wike said the Chairman of the Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers, King Dandeson Jaja drew his attention to the challenges faced by residents of the populated surburb.
He urged the people to cooperate with the contractors to ensure the completion of the road on schedule.
Commissioner for Works, Dum Dekor said the seven roads will be completed in six months, while the projects will offer employment to 230 youths.
The Works Commissioner noted that the road construction will also resolve the environmental challenges facing the residents.
Chairman of Obio/Akpor Local Government Area Caretaker Committee, Prince Noble Amadi praised the governor for key projects across the area, assuring him of total support in 2019.
Meanwhile,the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has admitted that the ruling party has failed to meet the expectations of Nigerians after almost three years in office.
He also said that the goodwill which it enjoyed during the 2015 general elections and the inauguration of the Muhammadu Buhari’s administration had been squandered.
Tinubu therefore concluded that the APC has a lot of work to do to regain public confidence and solidarity before the 2019 general elections.
The former Governor of Lagos State bared his mind on the state of the party last Wednesday in Abuja when he held a closed-door meeting with the National Working Committee (NWC) of the party at its secretariat.
The meeting was Tinubu’s first since Buhari appointed him to reconcile all the feuding leaders of the APC in various states of the federation.
In his down to earth assessment of the APC, Tinubu said that the party had faced several challenges since it took over power in 2015, stressing that it needs serious consultations and reconciliation moves to regain the goodwill of Nigerians.
He listed some of the challenges confronting the APC as the disorder in the North Central and North East zones, killings and agitations, as well as intra-party squabbles.
Tinubu said that the expectations of Nigerians had been high since the party won the presidential election in 2015, but regretted that the expectations had not been met.
In a brief chat with journalists before he went for a closed-door meeting with the NWC, the APC leader said that his visit was to consult with the party’s leadership, in line with the mandate given to him by the President, stressing that consultations and reconciliation were required since APC is still the hope of Nigerians for a better future.
He said: “I am here to consult, since you are already aware of the directive and announcement of the President who is the leader of our party and the President of this country.
“First, let me sympathise with our National Vice Chairman for North Central for the various incidents that are happening around that corridor, and may God bring peace to Benue, Taraba, Plateau, Nasarawa, and the country as a whole, and all other places being affected by the age-old system that we are now facing.
“After the last convention of the party, congresses were held from various wards to elect representatives from the ward, local government and state levels as well as the national level. We worked hard for victory. We have never governed before, but we won the confidence of Nigerians to govern.
“We have a creed to really serve the country; change and reform the country. It is not easy to have those changes implemented like instant curfew. We have to grow and face challenges.
“I sympathise with us and we should equally look at ourselves. Since we won the election, the expectations were very high and the goodwill was extremely high. But where are we today?
“The solution is to seek opinion and advice on the various complexities around some states or if there is any national one, to reconcile, move the party in a cohesive manner and reposition and build the confidence among ourselves”.
According to Tinubu, the challenges faced by the government and the President are enormous, noting that Nigerians were not paying attention to the various statistics that are available and “we have to push that. I won’t touch those areas yet,” he said.
Earlier, the APC National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, who described Tinubu as a “Peace Ambassador”, said that his visit was significant as the President moves to heal wounds where the party has any, as well as to bring every member of the APC together under a single objective, which is to give the party a runaway victory in 2019.