The Commissioner of Police in Rivers, Joseph Mbu, on Thursday descended on Governor Rotimi Amaechi, describing him as a power-hungry dictator.
The commissioner made the comment at a press conference in Port Harcourt, the Rivers state capital, during which he responded to claims by the Rivers State government that the crime rate in the state had gone up since his arrival in the state.
Mr. Mbu said Mr. Amaechi hated him and had been playing politics with his name because he refused to be subservient to him.
He said, “Sometimes, silence is golden but sometimes it is misconstrued. I have respect for Governor Amaechi but his attacks on me are going beyond bounds.
“Our governor is very tyrannical, he is a dictator. He wants everybody to say ‘yes sir’ to him and I said I will not say so. I am a professional.
“The governor should please stop playing politics with my name. I will tell the whole world why the governor is against me in the next interview. I will also tell you the crime rate before I came to Rivers and what the situation is now.”
The police commissioner also suggested Mr. Amaechi was power-hungry and had tried unsuccessfully to usurp his role as chairman of internal security meetings in the state.
He said a formal letter from the office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) directed the commissioner of police to chair the meeting, but that Mr. Amaechi insisted that it should be rotated.
“One issue I have had with the governor is who chairs internal security meetings in the state.
“He, (governor) said we should rotate it but I said no, there is a letter from the NSA on this.
“It is the commissioner of police that does. I told him if my predecessors did not do what was right I won’t follow them.
“The commissioner of police is to chair the forum and assume responsibility to brief the governor.
“I told him the Inspector-General of police has so many sources of information. I told the governor that my loyalty to the governor is total,’’ he said.
Mr. Mbu also said that no formal security meeting had been held since he came to the state, noting that he had not received any letter convening security meeting.
“I am not here for any agenda. I have respect for the office of the governor and the governor of the state, but let him (governor) also have respect for the police and me,’’ Mr. Mbu said.
But responding to the police commissioner’s claims, the state Commissioner for Information and Communications, Ibim Semenitari, described Mr. Mbu’s comments on Mr. Amaechi as “most unfortunate”.
“Mbu’s comments are most unfortunate, but we will prefer to address the matters raised administratively,” she said.