As Mr. President visits Rivers State today to flag off the Ogoni clean up, Governor Wike, both privately and publicly has called on Rivers people to accord him the hospitality he deserves as the nation’s leader.
For security reasons and to ensure a hitch-free event, the state governor has placed a temporary ban on the use of motor bikes and motorised tricycles, otherwise called Okada and tricycles (Keke) respectively. The ban, which is for Khana and Gokana Local Government Areas alone, begins from 6 am today to 6pm in the evening.
The sponsored rumours by the All Progressives Congress that Governor Wike intends to disrupt the president’s visit attest to the Party’s penchant for falsehood and its inability to promote peace and development in any society.
No one needs to emphasise Governor Wike’s peace loving and accommodating nature in the last one year of his administration. His conscious efforts to build peace and promote development are unparalleled and have been seen in the way and manner he has managed clearly offensive and instigating actions against him and his government by persons manipulating federal institutions to their own detriment.
For instance, consider the cordiality with which he has fellowshipped with even the military high command for the progress and development of Nigeria, regardless of the efforts by some politicians to compromise elections in Rivers State by comprising the stake of the military. It speaks volumes of unequalled maturity in an era of devalued societal and institutional norms.
Governor Wike’s commitment to development is sincere and apolitical. His interest is the promotion of the wellbeing of every Rivers’ person, which includes all who live and do business in Rivers State, without prejudice to their political preference or other mundane considerations. It is on this score that his support for the clean up of Ogoni and all other impacted communities in Rivers State and the Niger Delta is total. It is apolitical as it is genuine.
The efforts by the APC to demonise him is most unfair and condemnable especially since his character of leadership deviates greatly and is a marked difference from the immediate past APC led Rivers State government that politicised development and punished Rivers people unnecessarily for the pleasure of exercising political power. With the prevailing rhetoric of the Party, it does appear that it has learnt nothing from its embarrassing electoral defeat in Rivers State and is set to escalate it nationally.
True development is apolitical and nonpartisan. Moderating governance on the basis of discrimination is no different from apartheid, which local and international laws proscribe. The APC as an organisational political neophyte must learn the ropes of good governance from leaders like Governor Wike if it intends to genuinely win the hearts and minds of Nigerians. It must desist from running government based on propaganda as it is not sustainable. It didn’t work in Rivers State and is failing nationally. Enough of the segregation and apartheid.
Nigeria must be made to work for all Nigerians as leaders like Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State are proving with their exemplary leadership and personal conduct. There are no APC or PDP Nigerians when in comes to governance. All we have are Nigerians and no government should discriminate against Nigerians. Sponsoring lies in an attempt to win political advantage is vain and stale. Mr. President will be received by the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Ezenwo Wike and would have a pleasurable experience in Rivers State.
We are a hospitable people and the APC will not be further allowed to decimate our bond or promote strife among us. Rivers State is home for all and we love it so.
Welcome, Mr. President.
Oraye St. Franklyn, a strategic communicator and good governance advocate, writes from Port Harcourt, Rivers State. He is senior special advisor to Governor Nyesom Wike on New Media. He tweets from @RealOraye. He is also on Facebook.
The opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the author.