By Gbenga Oke
ALL Progressives Congress, APC, 2015 governorship aspirant in Rivers State, Dr Dakuku Peterside, yesterday, accused Governor Nyesom Wike of being economical with truth.
Peterside, Director-General of Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency, NIMASA, was reacting to a statement credited to Wike that while he (Peterside) was Commissioner of Works, he could not construct a road to Opobo/Nkoro, his local government area, accusing the governor of being economical with the truth to deceive Rivers people.
He said: “I served as Commissioner for Works at a time one of the pillars of the administration was infrastructural development. Dr Peter Odili’s administration, through the instrumentality of then Deputy Governor, Sir Gabriel Toby, initiated the Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo unity road, a 37-km road with 10 bridges and several culverts.
“Unfortunately, the administration was winding up, so could only do two bridges and got the road to Iwoama Asarama achieving 26 percent of total job scope.
“This is the point we met the road. At the insistence of the Amanyanabo of Opobo and the people of Nkoro, we did a new alignment to Nkoro, taking it to Kalaibiama and from there to Opobo town, thus introducing the Nkoro-Kalaibiama-Opobo town alignment of 11.5km and four bridges. With the change in alignment, the Unity Road became a 44.09km as against 37.7km awarded by the Odili administration in 2005.
“In all, six bridges were completed under my watch and two bridges, nine and10, were at 70 per cent and 50 per cent completion respectively at the end of the Chibuike Amaechi’s administration in 2015. We started driving to Nkoro town and I drove down to Kalaibiama town in Opobo to campaign in 2015. This is the true situation of things which every Rivers man knows, especially those from Andoni and Opobo.
“It is unfortunate that Governor Wike has neglected the completion of this important road with only two bridges to go, one on the Andoni axis and the other on the Opobo axis.
“Suffice it to add that the abutment and beams of both bridges were ready before we left government. By our estimates, we needed less than N7 billion to complete both axes of the road as at May 2015.”
Peterside lamented that rather than complete the road, the governor had embarked on lies, distortion of facts and politicisation of the major project.