By Omeiza Ajayi— Abuja
The ruling All Progressives Congress APC has cautioned the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike on the need to be measured in his public utterances, saying he will not gain national popularity by attacking the APC.
The party also challenged Governor Wike to name the APC leaders who are making overtures to him, saying APC has never pressurised or coerced anybody to join, rather people are coming into the party out of their free will.
The Secretary of the party’s Caretaker/Extra-Ordinary Convention Planning Committee (CECPC), Senator James John Akpanudoedehe stated this in a telephone chat while reacting to earlier claims made by the governor on national television.
“Tell Wike, he cannot attain national popularity by attacking or insulting the APC and its leaders. He should come out clean and declare if he wants to join the moving train of APC and not that he is been pressurised or wooed to join.
“Please ask him (Wike) to name his suitors. Who is putting pressure on him? I am not surprised what he (Wike) is doing. I have seen people like him, who hated APC in the past but today they are in APC having seen the light and the good thing the party is doing in re-positioning the country and making it work again after years of PDP misrule,” he stated.
On the allegation of anti-party against Akpanudoedehe in 2019, the APC Secretary said he refused to join issues with the governor, but noted that “this is cheap blackmail. This blackmail is no longer fashionable in politics. What we preach and practice in APC is politics of issues and substance and not cheap blackmail.
“I am a man of issues. I am a man of substance. I don’t join issues on blackmail. Wike can say anything. But ask him how he got to know whom I voted for in 2019. Was he in Akwa Ibom or he is a spirit that knows the party I voted for. The narrative of voting for another party cannot hold water. This storyline of blackmail is no longer in vogue.
“Where was Wike in 1999 when I was in the Senate? Is it because he is now a governor that he thinks he can hit national limelight by insulting APC Leaders? He should be matured and respect his exalted office and stop the blackmail game.”