Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has berated the former Director General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, Dakuku Peterside for things he said about the economy of Rivers State.
The governor said he wondered why Peterside, with his educational attainment, would say that merely because the budget figures of Lagos and Akwa Ibom States are higher, compared to Rivers’ budget, it means that Rivers economy is performing poorly.
He said if a man, who is that ignorant, refused to be silent but comes to public discourse platform to display such loose grasp of the subject matter, will cause people to question his academic status.
Governor Wike, therefore stated that Perterside puts a question mark on his doctoral degree, otherwise, how could he say that the performance of the economy is dependent on budgetary estimates.
“When they asked him about the budget of Rivers State, he said the mere fact that Lagos state budget is very high, the mere fact that Akwa Ibom budget is very high and Rivers state budget is low that means the economy is not doing well.
“A PhD holder saying that the performance of an economy is based on the size of a budget. Which means that Cross River that had a budget of N1.3 trillion economy has performed more than every other state economy.”
Governor Wike also decried what he called the low level of understanding showed by Peterside when he claimed that there is no governance in Rivers State.
The governor queries Perterside’s understanding of governance because he served in the last administration when all the courts in Rivers State were shut for two years, and they also failed to deliver the Opobo Road to enable the Opobo people drive on road to their country home.
“They asked him about governance, he said there is no governance in Rivers State. I agree with him. There was governance when the courts were shut down. You are aware that the courts were shut down for almost two years. There was governance at that time.
“There was governance when there was no road to Opobo. There was governance when they put bill one to rob Rivers State. You award a job of N7 Billion, in bill one is N4.5 billion . Now there is no governance because bill one has been removed. Now, there is no governance because you can drive to Opobo. Now, there is no governance because you can go to the court to seek for your right.”
Governor Wike also took a swipe on a factional chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), who he said is traditionally cursed, and hardly could write his name, to dare challenge him for criticising the federal government economy stimulation programmes.
The Rivers State Governor asserted that with the level of infrastructure and other inclusive policy of government towards Ahoada communities, nobody will say his administration has failed the Ekpeye people.
Governor Wike enumerated some of the projects delivered, particularly in Ahoada West council to include, the Ibiama -Okarki road, 10km internal roads in Odiokwu community, water scheme, health centre, and recognition of five first class traditional stools.
The governor said 100 percent of the contract sum for the reconstruction of Government Secondary School, Okarki was released to some of their sons ,but they diverted the money.
He, however, promised not to be deterred by their act but to revisit the project and ensure that it is competed.
Governor Wike said it is important that they resolve their problems over the selection and choice of a new Eze Ekpeye Logbo.
He urged them to complete that process within the next two months, and endorse a person who will not sell out Ekpeye’s interest or go to company to take what is meant for the entire Ekpeye people, and present same to the State Government.