Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike of Rivers State, on Saturday, came down hard on the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole.
Describing Oshiomhole “and his associates” as political armed robbers, Wike said Oshiomhole was resisted by Rivers people from stealing their mandate in the last general elections, “hence his bitterness towards Rivers State”.
Wike, who stated that he is not a violent politician, emphasised that under no circumstances would Rivers people allow Oshiomhole and his associates rob them of their mandate.
The Rivers Governor called for the resignation of Adams Oshiomhole in view of his failure to stop the inauguration of Bayelsa State Governor as he boasted.
Speaking in Port Harcourt, he said: “This is a country where you see people who do not have character. Today, they sing a song, tomorrow they sing another song. I think Oshiomhole as the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress PC is not a character that anybody should associate with.
“First of all I have never been violent and I will never be violent. However, when you see an armed robber come to your house, will you plead with the armed robber and say please I beg you leave my house? People think that armed robbers are only those who cart away people’s money. The worst form of armed robbery is when you steal people’s mandate and that is what Oshiomhole is noted for. He thinks because he’s in the ruling party, he can use security to steal the mandate of the people. He was taught a lesson, a bitter lesson and I want to repeat, if you come to steal our mandate, the people will respond accordingly. They will oppose your stealing of their mandate and so Oshiomhole thinks that because he is in the ruling party, nobody should say anything or do anything. Stealing is not only when you go to rob a bank. The worse form of armed robbery is when you steal the mandate of the people”.
Wike described Oshiomhole as a politician without character.
He noted that the APC National Chairman is always driven by survival instincts.
He stated that Oshiomhole cannot lay claim to having canvassed for one man, one vote because he is not practising the philosophy.
He noted that he stopped attending the National Economic Council because Oshiomhole turned it into a forum to bash former President Goodluck Jonathan, when he had gone to praise Jonathan at Aso Villa for ensuring credible elections.
“When Jonathan made sure the election was free and fair, Oshiomhole came to the villa and thanked Jonathan. When Jonathan left office, one of the reasons I don’t go to NEC meeting is because of Oshiomhole. When Jonathan left, there was no day at the NEC meeting Oshiomhole will not bring Jonathan down. Meanwhile, that was the same man Oshiomhole went to praise for allowing one man, one vote. But when the man left, Oshiomhole changed. That is his character,” he said.
Wike said that Oshiomhole became Governor through questionable means. He noted that the questionable emergence of Oshiomhole led to constitutional amendment for Governorship Matters to terminate at the Supreme Court.
He said: “Nigerians know one matter that led to the amendment of the Electoral Act where Governorship election has to go to the Supreme Court is because of the Oshiomhole matter. So, he cannot come out and say he was clean in terms of Electoral process. That will be very bad.
“Oshiomhole said he fought godfatherism and the same time he wants to install himself as a godfather in Edo State. Why is he fighting Obaseki? Because the man doesn’t take instruction from him. He preaches what he doesn’t practise. ”
The Rivers Governor maintained that Oshiomhole lacks the powers to challenge the pronouncement of the Supreme Court.
Wike said that Oshiomhole’s talk questioning his membership of PDP is the unintelligent talk of an illiterate, declaring that he is a strong and unrepentant member of PDP.
He said that he speaks out his mind at all times does not mean that his membership of PDP is in doubt.
Wike said that he is not at the same level with Oshiomhole. He noted that what Oshiomhole is doing is to regain the confidence of APC Governors and leaders.
He said: “I will not be a member of their party, I have always been a member of PDP and they know that. Oshiomhole knows that his party does not even score up to 25 per cent in my state. He cannot tell me that. There is a saying in my place. Somebody who has nothing to say, he says see how you are. So, Oshiomhole has nothing to say about me. And I want to tell him that his party is probing him about the so-called hospital he says he built. I am not the one.
“So he should face his problems but shame should be on him that at the end of the day, that the PDP Candidate has been sworn in as the governor of Bayelsa State. You can’t come out and open your mouth and say it will never happen. Now, it has happened.
“If I were him, I will resign, I will leave. I am not his friend, so he cannot say he is my friend. How can I be a friend to somebody who will say one thing today , tomorrow he says another thing? In the night, he visits so so person, that’s not me. When I want to see you, I see you in the day time. Oshiomhole visits people at night. It is very very unfortunate for him and I pity him. All his efforts to regain his chairmanship has failed.
“All he is doing today is because the governors and some leaders of the party are saying that this man cannot lead our party. Oshiomhole has failed. He is a man who opens his mouth anyhow. And this should be his last time, the moment he goes further then he will know that Rivers State is not what he thinks it is.
“We will tell him where he belongs. I will tell him where he goes in the night, and where he goes in the day time.”
Wike said the former unionist was very corrupt, as he used proceeds from workers to build his political career.
He said: “Oshiomhole claimed he was a unionist. He said he worked in the textile industry. Mention one man who works in the textile industry and is as rich as Oshiomhole today. He used to wear ordinary Khaki, today he wears Safari with diamond buttons. Simply because I said Oshiomhole cannot destabilise this country, who the hell is Oshiomhole to say that nobody can be sworn in when the Supreme Court has made a pronouncement whether good or bad”.
On Oshiomhole’s parable that he (Oshiomhole) is an antelope, while Wike is a tortoise, the Rivers State Governor stated that his pedigree and education are beyond the embattled APC National Chairman.
He said: “It is unfortunate that Oshiomhole will use that word to say a tortoise challenging an antelope. It is like saying in a country where Chimpanzee can be anything. How can Oshiomhole compare himself to me? I’m well read. I am lawyer. I am a life bencher. I have my first degree in Political Science and my second degree in Law and I went to the Nigerian Law School and I passed very well. Let Oshiomhole tell me which University he attended. As a unionist, he enriched himself. How did he become the Governor of Edo State, who doesn’t know? It’s just the country that we are in people who cannot boast of any certificate can be National Chairman. Let Oshiomhole tell me one University he attended. I attended the University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State University and served in old Gongola State.
“How dare he open his mouth and called himself an Antelope. Oshiomhole has become an Antelope because he is the National Chairman of a ruling party. It is now a ruling party because they told Nigerian lies. Let Oshiomhole come out and tell us his background except that he became a Governor through a dubious way and that was what led to the amendment of the electoral act that says Governorship matter in terms of the election will not end at the Court of Appeal but will get to the Supreme Court. I have become a Local Government Chairman, Chief of Staff, a Minister and a Governor and by the Grace of God a second time serving Governor.
“Oshiomhole has the audacity to say nobody will be sworn in in Bayelsa State, causing crisis in the country and nobody wants to call him to order but for people like us in Rivers State. Because of people like Oshiomhole and his style of leadership, his party lost so many areas they ought not to have lost. What made them not to have candidates in Rivers State and Zamfara, its because of Oshiomhole. Oshiomhole led to the problem they have in Bayelsa. Oshiomhole take from two sides. He is not a man of integrity and nobody should take him seriously.”
Wike added: “It is not my position to say it is right or wrong but Oshiomhole cannot open his wide mouth to say it cannot happen and now it has happened, what will he do? Don’t destabilise the country. Don’t cause crisis for this country. You may be closer to the President and that is not the way to retain your position as Chairman of the party because Oshiomhole doesn’t have the support of most of the Governors because of his style of leadership and it is very clear so Oshiomhole doesn’t have the right to tell me that I am a man of violence.
“Oshiomhole came from the background of an armed robber to steal the vote of Rivers people and we defended our votes and Oshiomhole is ashamed that we defended our votes and will still defend our votes till tomorrow. Rivers State is not like his State Edo where he can talk to anybody the way he likes. This should be the last time Oshiomhole should open his mouth and talk to anybody in Rivers State, we are not at the same level in terms of Education. Rivers State is not like Edo State where you bring down a sitting Governor because he wants to install another Governor. It depends on the people of Edo State to allow that , but for Rivers State, we will not allow anybody who wants to be a godfather”.