The camp of Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, has described as disgusting, comments made by the former governor of Jigawa State, Sule Lamido, that Wike has no monopoly over the Rivers electorate and that he would become politically irrelevant at the end of his tenure.
Lamido’s statement on Channels flagship programme, Politics Today, on Tuesday, came amid the deepening crisis in the PDP between the presidential standard-bearer, Atiku Abubakar and Governor Wike.
Responding to the Lamido’s claim, Special Assistant on Media to Governor Wike, Kelvin Ebiri, said while Lamido has the right to his personal opinion, he lacks the right to malign Governor Wike, whose contributions to the sustenance of the PDP is not in dispute.
Ebiri said he feels disappointed that the former governor of Jigawa State would make such a comment when efforts are on to resolve the issues rocking the PDP.
The statement reads, “We have observed with disgust the disdainful remarks made by the former governor of Jigawa State, Alhaji Sule Lamido, about Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, during his recent interview on Channels Television.
“While, we cannot deny that Alhaji Lamido has an inalienable right to his personal opinion, we wish to declare that he, however, lacks the right to malign Governor Wike, whose immense contributions to the sustenance of the PDP is not in dispute.
“It is rather appalling that at a time when concerted efforts are being made by lovers of true democracy and the unity of the party to resolve some inherent contradictions plaguing the PDP, Alhaji Lamido and his cohorts, who have since lost their relevance in the polity, are busy creating friction and schism.
“Governor Wike has never claimed to be custodian of the over three million votes in Rivers State. But as the leader of the PDP and good people of Rivers State, anyone who underrates the governor’s political pedigree or dares to ignore his influence in the state and beyond will be doing so at his own peril.
“We wish to remind Alhaji Lamido that Governor Wike has never left anyone in doubt about his capacity to sway the voters in Rivers State in a direction that benefits the people and the state, in the overall. When he speaks, Rivers people will listen, no doubt.
“We wish to state without equivocation that no well-meaning member of the PDP will describe Governor Wike as ‘insignificant’ in the affairs of the PDP.
“Under Lamido’s watch, as governor of Jigawa State in 2015, the APC governorship candidate, Mohammed Badaru Abubakar, scored a total 648,045 votes to defeat his PDP opponent, Malam Aminu Ringim, who scored a total 479,447 votes. Worst still, in 2019, Governor Abubakar polled 810,933, while the PDP candidate scored 288,356.
“Such records depict that Alhaji Lamido cannot and does not have such a political following that will benefit the PDP. Those who want electoral victory for the PDP are not dampening the morale required for political offensive at APC, but Alhaji Lamido is cracking the wall of unity badly.
“Let it be told that in 2015, Governor Wike, as an opposition candidate in Rivers State, polled 1,029,102 votes to defeat the then ruling APC governorship candidate, Dakuku Peterside, who managed to garner a paltry 124,896 vote.”