Amaechi Hints At Joining APC As Thousands of Rivers Indigene Host APC Leaders To A Grand Reception
The APC leaders led by its Interim National Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande, former Head of State, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, and the former Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu arrived the Port Harcourt International airport where scores of supporters had gathered to welcome them.
A mild drama however ensued at the airport as security operatives barred supporters of Governor Amaechi from welcoming the APC chieftains.
Governor Amaechi, who was also on his way to welcome the APC chieftains when his convoy reportedly stuck in the ensuing traffic gridlock, alighted from his car and trekked about four kilometres, accompanied by a crowd of supporters, to the airport, the source added.
Shortly after the arrival of the visitors, Governor Amaechi received and hosted them to a grand reception which turned a political carnival with thousands of supporters from the nook and crannies of the state present.
Rivers state indigenes present at the reception for the APC chieftains include Members of the National Assembly from Rivers State, members of the Rivers State House of Assembly led by the speaker, Chairmen of all the 23 local governments in the state.
Others at the reception include former minister of petroleum; Prof Tam David, Deputy Chairman of the New PDP, Sam Jaja and a host of others.
Speaking to the large crowd who had gathered to receive the visitors, Interim National Chairman of the Party urged the people of Rivers state to prevail on Governor Amaechi to join the APC.
“He is a leader of the leaders. And we think we will not go home without asking you, through him to join the APC. APC is the party of the progressives and that is where Rivers state belongs,” Akanda said.
Former Lagos state Governor, Bola Tinubu and former Head of State, General Muhammadu Buhari also urged the Rivers state Governor to join the APC.
Tinubu who spoke amidst cheers from the crowd said: “We were ready to come yesterday but the airspace was blocked. We did not want to offend anybody so we put our visit for today.
“Amaechi is a progressive. He is a visionary. He is focused. We know the basis of his persecution. It is because he fought for the oil and revenue of Rivers state. He is doing well. He is giving our children the greatest weapon against poverty – education.
“I urge you to ask Governor Amaechi to lead you to the APC. The progressives are offering the rescue boat. This is a mission to rescue Nigeria.”
Buhari on his part told the large gathering that: “We are here to seek understanding and support from you through your leader, Governor Amaechi. I worked with one of your greatest assets, Prof Tam David West.
“Nigeria is at a crossroad and that is why we decided to come together to rescue this country from destruction. We must get together and get this country moving again. I congratulate Gov. Amaechi for providing education for the people of the state.”
Responding to the call of the APC chieftain to join the party, a visibly happy who took to singing and dancing said he is going to consult the ‘consultables’ and take a decision on the invitation.
“To our APC guests, I like to say we are a group of seven governors. In that group, I’m perculiar because the president is from our zone. So regarding your invitation, I will consult our leaders, I will consult my party, I will consult even the president. He is from our zone. I will consult all the consultables!, says Amaechi.
He continued: “But the day we will take a decision, it will be at that our new stadium. It has the capacity to take 40,000 people. Tinubu, and the president will address 40,000 people. So we need to go out and continue to grow our number.
“They have money, they have the police, they have the army. The only thing we have is our people.
Amaechi who also spoke on his constant persecution by the PDP and the Presidency challenged his persecutors and asked the people to remain courageous.
“When you have God behind you, there is no one else. We have been hearing ‘we will remove him, we will remove him’. Have I been removed? They said they will remove us on the 11. Eleven is Monday. I will dance. The second reason I danced at Okrika is that they said they will stone me at Okrika. I went and it didn’t happen.”
“Most of the people on the other side are corrupt. They are thieves. They get contracts from the NNDC and the Niger Delta ministry and then go ahead to use the money to build hotels. One of they got 17 billion contract to build a road from Eleme to Imo Rivers. Is there a road there? They have served and are now hungry.
“They are so desperate that they have gone to hire Commissioner Mbu as the military wing of the PDP. One thing you should know is that the police will come after you. The only way to stop them is the people’s power. When you hear of impunity, It’s because you allow it. When you hear that Amaechi is courageous, it’s because I take risk. You must come out when we ask you to do so. There is no revolution without blood. The only revolution without blood is reform.
“Anyday they are ready for a debate, I’m ready. I call them thieves, let them reply me.
The visit of the APC leaders is coming few days after the Governor and President Jonathan held a closed door meeting in Port Harcourt, after both flew in the same helicopter with Gover Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa state.
The meeting we gathered is to discuss ways at resolving the crisis in the state as well as the Peoples Democratic Party where a group of seven Governors including Governor Amaechi have since formed a faction known as the PDP.
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