On February 10, at Bori, the people of Rivers South-East Senatorial District, made it clear to the All Progressives Congress (APC) that they appreciate the good works of Governor Nyesom Wike. The people, during a rally by the APC, disagreed with former Governor Chibuike Amaechi when he stated that Governor Wike had done nothing for Ogoniland. They insisted that Wike had done so much for them.
From their conviction on Wike’s achievement and the way they forcefully emphasised it, Amaechi had no choice than to agree. He stated: “What Governor Wike can lay claim to is the road from Sakpenwa-Bori and we thank him for that.” This acknowledgement, to say the least, is a clear manifestation of the Biblical John 8. 32: “Then you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.”
The angry Rivers South-East Senatorial District APC supporters set Amaechi free after he confirmed to them that he knew the truth about the ongoing transformation of their district by Nigeria’s best-performing governor. The investments that Governor Wike has made in Rivers South-East Senatorial District are so transformational that appreciation for his good works cuts across party lines.
The Sakpenwa-Bori Road is one of the most critical development projects in the area since 1960. It is a project that previous administrations, especially the Amaechi administration, used to toy with the collective emotions of the people. Despite getting over N3 trillion in eight years, Amaechi left office on May 29, 2015, without constructing the road. He left it as a narrow pathway, replete with deadly potholes and frightening bends. Before the 2015 elections, the governor promised to dualise the road if his candidate, Dakuku Peterside, won.
In view of his track record, the people of the district voted Governor Wike. He didn’t disappoint them. The dualisation of the Sakpenwa-Bori Road was promptly kicked off and an international contractor, CCECC, was contracted to work on it. This 16-kilometre road, which is cumulatively 32 kilometres, is furnished with streetlights, storm drains in critical areas, bridges and standard median. The road reinforcements are such that it will last for decades, while each carriageway can accommodate three vehicles at a time.
On the former narrow road, it was a suicide mission for any driver to attempt overtaking others. The situation has changed for the better. The Sakpenwa-Bori Road cuts through Tai, Gokana and Khana local government areas. It also leads to Andoni, Opobo-Nkoro and Akwa Ibom State. It is a major economic outlet for the Rivers South-East Senatorial District. It is the most important project for the district in decades. Off the Sakpenwa-Bori Road is the Kpopie-Bodo Road, abandoned by the Amaechi administration after it released billions of naira to a serving senator from the area. The road was abandoned at less than 20 per cent construction. Governor Wike completed the road, constructed walkways and furnished it with streetlights. The way to Bodo City has been paved and modernised to energise the town’s economy.
Way down the Sakpenwa-Bori Road is the almighty Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo-Nkoro Unity Road. This is a life-changing project started by former Governor Peter Odili, but abandoned by Amaechi during his eight years of misrule. The Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo-Nkoro Unity Road is an economic lifeline to the riverine communities of Andoni and Opobo-Nkoro local government areas. Already, the Wike administration has advanced the road to many riverine communities in the two local government areas.
The Birabi Memorial Grammar School, Bori has been revived and boarding education introduced in one of the education reform packages of the Rivers State governor. The school was left to rot in the past. It became an eyesore and a den of criminals. Today, it has been transformed to a centre of learning.
Across Khana, Gokana, Tai, Eleme, Oyigbo, Andoni and Opobo-Nkoro local government areas, Governor Wike has reconstructed over 50 secondary and primary schools, repositioning them for quality education. This project is ongoing in many more communities. The zonal hospital, Bori, being constructed by the Rivers State government under the leadership of Governor Wike is, nearing completion. The immediate past failed APC government in the state awarded the contract but abandoned it at 15 per cent stage. This tertiary healthcare facility will cater for the high level healthcare needs of people of the Rivers South-East Senatorial District.
The Rivers State governor has also rehabilitated General Hospital, Bodo City, General Hospital, Nchia Eleme, General Hospital, Ngo, and General Hospital, Opobo. These hospitals have been equipped for the people of Rivers South-East Senatorial District to access the best quality healthcare. Eleme-Oyigbo Road and Camp Mbano Road construction have reached advanced levels. They have enhanced the economies of the two local government areas.
The senatorial district has enjoyed the cooperation of the Rivers State governor in terms of political posts and critical appointments. The national chairman of PDP, Prince Uche Secondus, the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Ikuinyi-Owaji Ibani, Secretary to the Rivers State Government, Sir Kenneth Kobani, Finance Commissioner, Dr. Fred Kpakol, Works Commissioner, Rt. Hon. Dum Dekor, Commissioner of Environment, Prof. Roseline Konya, Commissioner of Economic Planning, Isaac Kamalu, and administrator, Greater Port Harcourt City Development Authority, Ambassador Desmond Akawor, are all from the district.
On the premise of outstanding projects delivery for the Rivers South-East Senatorial District and the political positioning of the district , thousands of appreciative people of the area converged on Bori on Saturday, April 14, 2018, to endorse Governor Wike as PDP’s sole governorship candidate for 2019.
Moving the motion for the adoption of Governor Wike as the sole candidate for the 2019 governorship election, Senator Lee Maeba said there was no vacancy for anyone from Rivers South-East Senatorial District to contest for the governorship seat. He said: “Governor Wike will be re-elected and sworn-in for a second term in office on May 29, 2019. Governor Wike’s development records speak for him. He will be promoted for a job well done.”
Senator Maeba said the people of Rivers South-East would resist any attempt to use the military to steal their votes. Seconding the motion, Senator Olaka Nwogu said the people of Rivers State deserve a performing leader in the class of Governor Wike to consolidate on the gains of his state-wide development.
Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Ibani, said the people of the area would work hard to ensure Governor Wike’s victory. Chairman of the occasion, Chief Moses Wifa, SAN, said the Rivers State governor has performed beyond expectations. He said the Rivers State governor was imbued with vision, character and strength to serve the people. Chief Wifa said in the face of the failure of the APC Federal Government, Governor Wike has stood firm as the hope of the down-trodden.
In a welcome address on behalf of the people of Rivers South-East Senatorial District, Akawor said, with the immense support on display, the governor needs not campaign because his legacy projects and human capital development would speak for him.
On his part, Wike said the support and endorsement of the people of Rivers South-East Senatorial District would mot be in vain. According to him, the district has benefited from life-changing and economically enhancing programmes, such as Sakpenwa-Bori Road, Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo Unity Road, Bori Zonal Hospital, Opobo, General Hospital, Ngo, General Hospital, Camp Mbano Road, Kpopie-Bodo Road, Bodo General Hospital and Eleme-Oyigbo Road.
He said: “All promises are being fulfilled for the people of the senatorial district. We shall continue to work for the benefit of Rivers people,” he said.
The governor stated that his administration would never abandon the people of Rivers South-East Senatorial District. He said, on the other side, the APC has abandoned the people of the area, denying them key projects.
“APC Federal Government promised you clean-up, but they are now planning to build a prison in the area. They take our oil, pollute our environment, but will never invest in the environment. They don’t deserve a second chance. Anybody from Rivers State who is still supporting the APC must be examined,” he said.
Governor Wike’s leadership of Rivers State is embedded in delivery of projects and programmes for the good of the people. He has redefined the governance process, ensuring that the people get value for their votes and resources. In three years, Rivers South-East has witnessed a total transformation of its economy, living standard and political standing. Little wonder, everyone in the senatorial district, PDP and APC, wants Governor Wike to lead Rivers State once again between 2019 and 2023 .
The Rivers South-East Senatorial District’s endorsement of Governor Wike is a certification of the governor’s projects for them. Like other Nigerians, they have come to appreciate Governor Wike’s commitment to societal growth and human capital development.
Without doubt, the coast is clear. The people have made their choice. They want Rivers State renewed. Indeed, they are satisfied with New Rivers and its benefits. They want a consolidation of the development process. Every right-thinking person wants a winning team to continue. In Rivers South-East Senatorial District, there are millions of right-thinking persons. They all want Rivers State renewed. They all want Governor Wike for 2019.