By OUR REPORTER
Governor of Rivers State, Mr. Nyesom Wike, has shed more light on his earlier statement reported in Nigerian media including The DEFENDER as mockery of Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) presidential party when he said “something is fundamentally wrong” for the former Vice President’s principal, former President Olusegun Obasanjo, to prefer Labour Party (LP) presidential candidate, Dr. Peter Obi, to him as next Nigerian President.
Following Obasanjo’s letter endorsing Obi, Governor Wike had scathing words for the PDP presidential candidate, who served as Vice President under Obasanjo between 1999 and 2007, which were met with strong criticisms from several PDP members, including the spokesperson for the party’s Presidential Campaign Council (PCC), Senator Dino Melaye, who accused him of disrespect and unwarranted insult on the former vice president.
But Wike, while flagging-off of the construction of Mgbuodohia Road on Tuesday December 3, 2022, said he did not mean evil by his statement.
“I meant no bad. I’m only worried as a prominent PDP member. A man who loves PDP should be worried. That’s all – my concern. I was not mocking anybody.
“I was merely worried because my prayer was ‘Let Obasanjo remain quiet and not say anything.’ That was my prayer but my prayer didn’t work.
“My prayer was that if this man makes any statement, it indicts us because he was president under the Peoples Democratic Party for eight years and he worked with our presidential candidate for eight years.
“One now concludes that having done so, then the principal will hand over to [him] having thought that this is the person that I think should do this job better. But when the principal has said, ‘No, it’s another person,’ it worried me and that’s why I said something is fundamentally wrong.”
Since the PDP primaries in May 2022, Wike has been at odds with Atiku, insisting that the party’s National Chairman, Iyorchia Ayu, must step down on the grounds that he is from the same region as the standard bearer.
The governor chided those attacking him on behalf of Atiku, saying they should instead be in search of a remedy to the issues he pointed out.
“Instead of them to say, ‘What do you think is wrong?’ you are abusing me. What did I do? I didn’t do anything; all I [expressed] was a concern: ‘something is fundamentally wrong.’
“If you care for this party, it is for you to now go back [and ask]: ‘What is it that is fundamentally wrong that this man did what he did?’ And then you’re abusing me. I don’t understand. You’re abusing the man that is worried that the party should do something.
“I’ve told people, those who love this party – those who know that if anything happens to this party are those who are worried about the party, not those who are moving around every day.
“They are not bothered but those of us who since 1998, we joined this party, contributed for the survival of this party till now, that’s why we’re always shouting,” he said.
The governor echoed the views of the G5 or Integrity Group, a group consisting of him and four other aggrieved PDP governors, saying the issue was not about him, but equity, fairness and justice.
“I don’t need anything. If anybody thinks that you can just sit in your house and dish our orders, it will not work. The house will collapse on you. So, you better think twice. So, stop sending all these your errand who don’t have any jobs. I have a job, that’s why I’m working up till now till May 29,” he said.