Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi has refuted insinuations that he sold state assets and spent money belonging to the state to fund the All Progressives Congress [APC], and challenged those who made the claims to provide proof.
Mr. Amaechi spoke at the flag-off of the APC 2015 gubernatorial campaign in Port Harcourt City Local Government Area held at the Liberation stadium.
He said the APC is a big party and is not the responsibility of any state.
“I will tomorrow reply my critics who are accusing me of using State money to fund APC,” Mr. Amaechi said. “APC is a big party that can fund itself. The Rivers State Government cannot fund APC. And if you people say I am not corrupt, where am I getting the money to fund APC?
“My own friend, my brother, Tonye Princewill, you know he is a young boy, always crying, always. Let him show evidence of my funding APC. Let him show evidence of the private account that I opened and I paid the money. Tonye Princewill should reason like all of us who are graduates of the University of Port Harcourt. Uniport Graduates will not make accusations without bringing evidence. But he is my friend, Tonye is my friend and brother, I will not deny him, but the election is between we and them and we believe we will win.”
Presenting to the public the governorship candidate of the APC in the state, Dakuku Peterside, and his running mate, Honourable Asita, Mr. Amaechi urged Rivers people to vote for the APC governorship candidate and ensure continued development in the state.
“I have introduced to you Dakuku Adol Peterside and Honourable Asita. Most of you don’t know that his name is Honourable Asita. When you go to vote, you will not see their names but you will see their broom and you will see APC. The story all over Port Harcourt is ‘Governor Amaechi, you have done well, show us your successor’. I have shown you now my successor,” he said.
He slammed the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the centre for poor performance, adding that Gen. Muhammadu Buhari of the APC would make a better President.
He also criticized President Goodluck Jonathan for failure to promote infrastructural facilities in the South-South geopolitical zone, saying that it was leaders from other parts of Nigeria who brought infrastructure to the South-South.
“The road to Bonny is a federal government road, it is abandoned. It was started by Gen. Obasanjo, Gen. Obasanjo is not from Rivers State, he is not a South-South person. He is from Ogun State even though he is a progressive, nationalistic Nigerian. He is patriotic and a nationalist and he is a Nigerian and he came here and started a road project, it is abandoned. The East-West road…can you go to Eleme again? The road is abandoned. They say they will commission it in December, they have not commissioned it yet,” Mr. Amaechi said.
Earlier, the APC governorship candidate, Mr. Peterside, unveiled his action plan stating that his administration if elected would ensure security and promote massive job employment, wealth creation and attract investment to the state.
He also pledged to follow in the footsteps of Governor Amaechi whom he described as a great, courageous and visionary leader.
“By the Special grace of God, on the 29th of May, 2015, when an APC governor is sworn in, we will move into action immediately. We will build a safe Rivers. The first pillar is security, rule of law, transparency in conduct of government affairs. Our leader, the Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi at the inception of his government put in place proper security architecture. He injected a security infrastructure and of course you notice that after some years we had problem with our internal security when those bent on destroying Rivers State decided to use federal powers to destroy what we have in Rivers State because they don’t want development in our state, they want development in other states. We will take our security back. We will improve on it,” Peterside stated.
“We will spend money to build that security infrastructure that will help us become the safest state in the whole of Nigeria. If we want investment to flow to this state, if we want productivity to peak, if we want to create wealth, the first thing we must do is to ensure that this state is safe for people to live in and do business,” he added.
He also assured the people that he would be transparent and obey the rule of law.
Meanwhile, the Rivers APC welcomed some defectors from the ruling PDP led by Lolo Tamunonemi Ibienye. They indicated lack of internal party democracy in the PDP as their reason for switching their membership to the APC.
The defectors were members of the Rivers Mainstream Coalition that supported rotational governorship in the State.