Rivers governor, Nyesom Wike, has fired back at Seriake Dickson, accusing the Bayelsa state governor of deliberately allowing the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) to win the 2019 governorship election in Bayelsa.
“Dickson colluded with these people (in APC), so that EFCC will not arrest him when he leaves government,” a statement from Rivers Government House quoted Mr Wike to have said, in response to Mr Dickson’s recent tirades against him.
The statement was issued on Monday by Governor Wike’s spokesperson, Simeon Nwakaudu.
The governor said, “Dickson concluded plans to join the APC. Timipre Silva and Heineken Lokpobiri blocked him. He knew I have strength, he would have consulted me.
“We (Rivers) are the only state in the South-South that President Muhammadu Buhari never got 25 percent (of votes).
“Buhari got 45 percent in Bayelsa State. So who colluded with who? It is now that Dickson has realised that they played him? All those nocturnal promises were not kept. I challenge Dickson to ask his candidate, Senator Douye Diri, the contributions I made. Is it because I didn’t pass it through him?”
Governor Dickson was not committed to the PDP throughout the 2019 elections, he said.
“Dickson planned for PDP to fail elections and he is now crying federal might. He assumed the role of God. Nobody could tell him anything. During his second term election, people resisted the army. But this time, they left him alone.”
Mr Dickson had earlier accused Mr Wike of being disrespectful to the government and people of Bayelsa and meddling with the Bayelsa 2019 governorship election, as well as trying to divide the people of Ijaw ethnic nationality who are spread across Rivers and Bayelsa.
Rivers and Bayelsa are fighting over the ownership of disputed Soku oil wells, but the immediate cause of the rift between the two governors is Mr Dickson’s April visit to a Rivers monarch, the Amanyanabo of Kalabari kingdom, Theophilus Princewill.
Mr Wike said his Bayelsa counterpart breached protocol by visiting the monarch without passing through the Rivers government, but Mr Dickson said he had passed the information on his planned visit to the Rivers government through Mr Wike’s chief of staff and security aide.
On the disputed oil wells, Mr Wike said the Bayelsa government could appeal against a Federal High Court judgment said to have been in favour of Rivers State.
“In 2002, NBC altered the boundary in the 11th Edition of the Administrative Map of Nigeria. They made a mistake by shifting the boundary from River Santa Barbara to River St Batholomew. At the Supreme Court, NBC wrote a letter admitting their error.
“The Supreme Court made an order for the NBC to correct the error of the 11th Edition in the 12th Edition.
“We had to sue NBC to enforce the order of the Supreme Court, where they were directed to ensure that the Boundary between Rivers and Bayelsa State is River Santa Barbara.
“Judgment has been given. The best the Bayelsa State governor can do is to go on appeal. You cannot heap your frustration on us. We have nobody to carry guns, so the best place to go is the court,” Mr Wike said.
“I am protecting what belongs to Rivers State Ijaw. I am protecting what belongs to Rivers State.
“The outgoing Bayelsa State governor is the one trying to cause disharmony by attempting to collect what belongs to the Ijaw in Rivers State,” he said.