Rivers 2015: Presidency Dashes Wike’s Governorship Ambition, Minister Weeps
The ambition of the supervising minister of education, Nyesom Wike to become the governor of Rivers State may have come to an arbitrary end following what sources said is a directive from the presidency asking Wike to drop his ambition.
The news that the presidency has asked him to drop his governorship ambition was broken by Wike himself at a Tuesday night meeting with PDP stakeholders in the state.
The minister was said to have wept uncontrollably while breaking the news which effectively put to an end the political struggle pitching him and Governor Rotimi Amechi against each other over who will take control of the PDP in the state.
Governor Amaechi later left to join the All Progressives Congress (APC), but his exit did not make any difference. The PDP in the state continued to be embroiled in political problems.
Although, it is not immediately clear what eventually led to this decision by the Presidency and the PDP to stop Wike, the spokesperson of the Rivers Progressive Forum, Prince Chidi Weli said unconfirmed reports from a source who was privy to the meeting said the internal crisis within the state chapter of the PDP was largely responsible for the Minister’s current woes.
Wike who was seen as the man responsible for the widening of gaps between the Presidency and the Rivers State Governor (he had hijacked the Party machinery from Gov Amaechi who had trusted him with the political aspect of his government) was shocked when the state Party Chairman, G.U. Ake was replaced by Felix Obuah who was never part of the Congress that voted Ake into office. It was alleged that Goround as he is popularly called had travelled out of the country two days before the Congress. But in what looks like a scene from Nollywood, Obuah, a close ally of Ake was the willing tool in the hands of Wike and Prince Uche Secondus to nail Amaechi at all cost.
It was gathered that Ake actually won the election but resumed duty at the State Party Secreariat without a Certificate of Return from the National Secreariat of the Party. That thud afforded these men the opportunity to append Obuah’s name on the Certificate which they presented in Court. Surprisingly, the Court refused to admit a video evidence of the Congress tendered by Ake’s counsel. INEC officials were not left out in this conspiracy.
At the end, Ake lost out to a man who did not even pick a nomination form and was not part of the Congress. As Ake lost, so did Amaechi.
The stage was then set for the frustration of Amaechi out of the Pary. Wike did not stop to show his disdain for his former boss and ally. He became the hatchet man for the job of pulling Amaechi down in defence of his new found boss, President Jonathan.
He was given a free hand to run the Ministry of Education, after the unceremonious exit of the Minister. Choice contracts were awarded to cronies and supporters even at the expense of poor quality jobs. In some cases, it was alleged that the jobs were not executed but payments were made.
The failed attempt to impeach Amaechi also proved another opportunity for millions of naira to exchange hands. While the siege on Rivers state lasted with the alleged support of the First Lady, the President kept mum.
But Wike may have bitten more than he could chew when his crony, Obuah publicly announced Wike’s ambition to succeed Amaechi. Using the GDI, he hijacked the party structure while he trasversed the nooks and crannies of the state. He moved unchallenged until Elemchukwu Ogbowu dared him. Ogbowu said it was morally wrong for Wike, an Ikwerre man to succeed his kinsman, Amaechi. The former lawmaker said the proper thing was for power to shift to the Riverine people of Kalabari or to the Upland people of Ogoni.
That audacity to challenge Wike and Obuah incurred a suspension and later an expulsion hammer on Ogbowu and a few others with him. But Ogbowu was not done yet as he galvanised the support of those who were against the plot to enthrone Wike and together they petitioned the NWC of the PDP led by Adamu Muazu.
The pressure was on Wike to recall the men and drop his ambition, but as it is said, whom the gods want to kill, they first make mad. Wike would not bulge, rather he went ahead to sponsor his crony, Chukwuemeka Aaron to obtain a suspicious Court order restraining the PDP National from dissolving or changing the Rivers Ex-Co led by Obuah. This was a move aimed at stopping the Party from changing the Ex-Co during the forthcoming mini – convention of the party in July.
Unknown to Wike, that was his death nail as that action angered the Party leadership as well as the President.
Last week, he was asked to vacate the Order but he chose to ‘fight back’, more so when he had spent so much in pursuing his ambition.
Now, it is obvious that he would be dropped from the Federal Executive Council, having tendered his resignation notice; it is just enough reason for him and his foot soldiers to weep.
Our source also gathered that the meeting which lasted into the wee hours of the morning was brainstorming on how best to break the news to the public. The group agreed that a Press Statement would be issued claiming that the Minister never had any such ambition.
Additional report from the statement of Rivers Progressives Forum
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