By Maxwell Adeyemi Adeleye
The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2015 election in Rivers State, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, has stated that bad governance by the Governor Nyesom Wike-led administration is retarding the progress of the state.
While speaking at the formal reception and public declaration of a former Executive Director, Finance and Administration, of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Dr. Henry Ogiri, for the APC from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), over the weekend at Abua Central, the headquarters of Abua/Odual Local Government Area of Rivers state, Peterside stressed that Rivers people were already tired of the PDP’s government in the state.
Wike had earlier stated at the Government House, Port Harcourt that once elections were approaching, desperate opposition politicians and their media collaborators would allegedly be inducing negative propaganda on insecurity and bad governance.
Rivers governor stressed that deliberate anti-development programmes
Wike said: “We are the only state that applied for bail-out funds, but they did not give to us. We are the only state where they started deducting our funds, when a loan facility has not been given to us.”
Peterside, who is also the Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), however, declared that Rivers state was in reverse gear, in view of bad governance.
The APC chieftain said: “The bad governance in Rivers State is telling on the people and they are aware that this government is not for them.
“Ogiri got to the top and saw the bad governance in Rivers State and he decided to return to his original political fold, to meet with his friends and those who he played politics with earlier.
“Ogiri was part of those who helped PDP in the 2015 elections in many ways than one and they know it.
“The coming rerun and 2019 elections will prove that the government of Rivers State is not leading the people well, which is why Ogiri left them.”
Peterside, a former member of the House of Representatives, also berated the Wike-led government of being unable to maintain many infrastructural facilities built by the administration of Rotimi Amaechi, now the Minister of Transportation.
The director-general of NIMASA said: “Wike cannot maintain the infrastructure Amaechi put on the ground. Look at the health centres, schools and the overseas scholarships, among others. Instead he (Wike) has introduced tax regime in secondary schools that are supposed to be free. Rivers state is indeed retrogressing.
“Companies are not here (in Rivers State) anymore. They are packing and leaving in droves, because of bad governance, high tax and insecurity. The people are aware of this downturn in the fortune of the state and have consequently rejected Wike’s government.”
At the grand reception, Ogiri, who defected with no fewer than 2,000 supporters, tore his PDP’s membership card and Wike’s campaign clothes, declaring that it was over for him, as far as the PDP was concerned.
Amaechi, who was represented by the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Petroleum (Downstream) in the 7th National Assembly, Senator Magnus Abe, blamed the Rivers governor for introducing violence into politics in the state, but assured that it would no longer be a lucrative venture.
The former Rivers governor (Amaechi) also stated that Ogiri had made the right decision in joining the APC.