By Charles Igbo
The Leadership of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Rivers State, is angry.
It is angry at its high profile members who visit from outside the State, on the invitation of Governor Nyesom Wike of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Governor Wike, in the wake of his disagreement with the leadership of his Party formed the habit of inviting high profile members of the opposition, especially, the APC, to Commission some of the projects he executed in the State.
But the APC in Rivers State is angry, not over the invitation extended to their leaders but over two issues.
One, when they come to the State, they hardly visit or ask after the APC leaders. Even when the immediate past Transportation Minister, Chibuike Amaechi is in town, they neither call him nor visit him. They simply come and go as if the APC is non existent in the State.
Two, the Rivers APC is, also, angry that they talk down on the Party while they are in the State, and heap praises on Wike and his Government only. Thus, they said in a protest to the National Leadership, the Rivers State APC chapter has been reduced to a laughing stock. The Party and its members have become subjects of mockery in the State.
In the letter to the National Chairman of the Party, Senator Abdullahi Adamu, the Rivers State Chairman, Emeka Beke, called the visiting APC members, “disgruntled leaders”, and Wike, their “pay master”
He said: “Sir, it is disheartening to note, that any time these disgruntled leaders of the party with anti-party activities running in their veins, which is their stock in trade, visit Rivers State, they will openly make condemnation and scurrilous remarks, thereby demoralizing the spirited and concerted effort of APC members in Rivers State, all in an attempt to please Governor Nyesom Wike, their pay-master,”.
Beke pointedly mentioned the utterances of Ebonyi State Governor, David Umahi, and former National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole when they visited the State recently to commission Wike’s projects.
He demanded an “unreserved public apology” from Umahi and Oshiomhole for, allegedly, coming to Rivers State to campaign against the APC. The protest letter also asked for the suspension of both men for “anti-party activities,” unless they show remorse with the requested public apology.
Beke emphasized that Rivers APC is not worried about the regular visit of the party leaders to Wike. But while they are on their visits, he insists that: “they must stop talking trash and campaigning against APC Candidates in Rivers State because they want to over rich themselves anytime they visit Rivers State.”
On Oshiomhole, he told Adamu: “Sir, most recently, particularly, on 16th November, Mr Oshiomhole visited Rivers State on the invitation of Governor Wike to commission the Rumuepirikorm-Ada George Fly-over.
“During the commissioning, he said ‘I have seen the reason why Governor Wike used to win APC in Rivers State. Mr Wike has very strong and energetic youths he is working with, which he use to win my party. Wike, will you permit me to go with some of them from Rivers State to Edo State.’
He said Umahi then took after Oshiomhole.
Beke: “Subsequently, on 22nd November, Dave Umahi, visited Rivers State on the invitation of Mr Wike to commission the Akpabu-Omudioga-Egbeda Road and he said ‘Governor Wike you have tried so much. The only day you will see me in Rivers State campaigning is the day we will come here for the Presidential Campaign, apart from that, you will not see me again because all other positions, you will win.’
Both Oshiomhole and Umahi, he said, made their statements, live, on television and so, the Party’s National Leadership cannot pretend to be unaware of it.
Amaechi is the overall State leader of the Party. But he has been unusually quiet since after he lost the Presidential ticket to Asiwaju Bola Tinubu.