Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Prominent political leader in Rivers State, Dr. Dakuku Peterside, has congratulated Alhaji Atiku Abubakar on winning the presidential ticket of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, for the 2023 election.
Dakuku Peterside, who said the outcome of the PDP presidential primary on Saturday, in Abuja, was a proof that Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, was only a ‘local champion’ who lacked the requisite experience to compete in national politics, expressed sadness that despite spending not less than N30bn of Rivers’ funds, PDP delegates still rejected him.
“Wike has shown lack of requisite experience and depth to compete in national politics”, the former Director General, Nigeria Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, stated, and advised the defeated presidential aspirant to submit himself to Atiku to be tutored on how hi-wire politics is played. “I suggest that Wike quickly returns home, shades off his toga of pride, and submit himself to Atiku to be tutored on the dynamics of national politics and the angles to hi-wire deals”, he added.
While lamenting that Rivers State would be worse off now that Wike has suffered this crushing defeat in the hands of Atiku, Dakuku Peterside noted that giving away about N10bn of public funds in unsolicited charity to states, and about N20bn pursuing his ill-fated presidential bid, confirm his earlier stance that Wike’s governorship is among Rivers States worst era since 1967.. “That Wike could dip his hands that deep into Rivers’ treasury to pursue his vaunting ambition is a confirmation of my earlier assertion that Wike’s governorship represents our all time low moments since the state was created on May 27, 1967.”
Continuing, Dr Dakuku Peterside, a former member of the National Assembly, wondered how, in order to pursue personal ambition, Wike turned deaf ears to the daily cries of pensioners and other workers who are being owed their entitlements in the state. “I wonder how Wike sleeps at night with Rivers’ pensioners going to bed hungry, and sizeable number not waking up again out of frustration. For his personal ego and ambition, he preferred to lavish billions of naira on delegates than attend to those senior citizens.”
The opportunity cost of Wike’s circus presidential pursuit is the abandonment of education, healthcare and human capacity development in the state, the turnaround expert argued. “Rivers state is so blessed yet our people are leaving in untold hardship and experiencing underdevelopment because of Wike’s visionless administration of state resources “ said Dr. Peterside .