By Davies Iheamnachor – Port Harcourt
The Minister of Transportation, Mr Chibuike Amaechi, and the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, have disagreed over the security challenge in the state.
Amaechi, the former governor of the state, while receiving some decampees from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, into the All Progressives Congress, APC, said the curfew imposed in the state by Wike was a sign that his (Wike’s) administration has failed.
The minister blamed the level of insecurity in the state to alleged high level of unemployment, saying that he (Amaechi) led every operation to chase criminal elements out of the state
Amaechi said the state was in danger, expressing regrets that governor Wike was acquiring properties in the state without considering the safety and welfare of the people.
He stated that when he was a Governor, he did not only built roads but schools, Health Centers, farms, industries, employment of different categories of people, and as well send Rivers sons and daughters to study overseas which helped in tackling security challenges then.
Amaechi, however, enjoined members of APC to go home and mobilise new members into the party and avoid creating room for continued fighting in the party,
But, Wike in a swift reaction said it was disingenuous for the minister of transportation, Chibuike Amaechi, to attribute insecurity in the State to unemployment.
He questioned: “Is unemployment fuelling insecurity in Kaduna, Plateau, Borno, Yobe, Ondo, Ebony, Imo, Niger States governed by the All Progressives Congress (APC)?”
Wike in a statement by his Special Assistant on Media, Kelvin Ebiri, said if the minister, who is the immediate past governor of the state has any modicum of sincerity, he will attest to the fact that security is the sole responsibility of the federal government.
Wike said: “Is he (Amaechi) trying to indict his boss, President Muhammad Buhari, who is the Commander in Chief of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and who is constitutionally saddled with the responsibility to provide security for Nigerians.
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“It is a well-known fact that Amaechi is the one who appoints every Commissioner of Police that has been posted to Rivers State since 2015. So, if there is any security failure, he is to blame.”
Governor Wike described the minister’s “misguided” utterance on the current imposition of curfew in the State, following the recent attacks on police formations, as rather unfortunate.
“Perhaps, the minister is happy that members of the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) are killing innocent policemen, who were protecting lives and property.
“Is Amaechi happy that the weapons of these slain security personnel were carted away by the hoodlums? Amaechi, from all indication, has lost focus and is now frustrated,” he said.
The governor, declared that his administration has offered scholarships to over 500 Rivers State students to study medicine and other related courses at the PAMO University.
Reacting to the allegation by the minister that he is acquiring property in the State, the governor said it is better to acquire property in Nigeria than to do so in Ghana.
Governor Wike said Amaechi’s jubilation over the defection of his former Commissioner of Urban and Rural Planning, REASON ONYA, who was indicted by a Judicial Commission of inquiry, is a pointer that he is politically irrelevant in Rivers State.
The governor further urged the minister to return to Abuja and resolve the financial malfeasance rocking federal agencies under his watch and desist from destroying the homes of others.