The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has stated that governors of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and their party’s Board of Trustees, BOT, saved it from implosion, adding that the resolution of the internal crisis rocking the PDP has allayed his initial fear of possible implosion in the party.
Wike noted that the convivial manner in which PDP governors and Board of Trustee members resolved the crisis has given Nigerians hope that the party is prepared to takeover the realm of power from the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in 2023.
The Governor made the assertion while speaking as a guest on the Africa Independent Television’s Programme, Focus Nigeria, in Port Harcourt, yesterday.
The governor explained that it was not uncommon for a political party to experience internal squabble in view of the forthcoming poll and varying interests, but commended PDP governors for coming together to speak with one voice to end the differences.
Wike said: “I use to be afraid of possibility of an implosion and that could have been the end of the party. But what I saw on Monday gave me a lot of confidence for the first time. I have never seen that happen, the way the governors came together and spoke in a convivial manner with no dissenting view. I was impressed.”
WIke, who dismissed insinuation that he has personal disagreement with the National Chairman of the PDP, stated that his primary concern had been to salvage the PDP from an impending doom occasioned by an inert leadership.
“Everybody believed that whatever the national chairman was doing was dictated by Wike and must have the backing of Wike. I believe when you support somebody, support him to succeed. But when things are also going wrong, if you don’t speak out, people will believe you are part of it. Therefore, I owe it as a duty to say things are not going right,” he said.
The governor accused some members of the National Working Committee, particularly, the National Organising Secretary, Col. Austin Akobundu of stirring crisis in the party because of his governorship ambition.
He warned that the PDP should be wary of agents of the APC, whose stock in trade is to cause division and destabilise the party. According to him, some of these persons are some former governors and ministers.
The governor stated that he does not have problems with the former Vice President of Nigeria, Alhaji Atiku Abubarkar and was not aware if Atiku wants to contest the presidency in 2023 because PDP has not yet zoned the presidency.
Commenting on the recent court judgement that it is Rivers State government and not Federal Inland Revenue that should collect Value Added Tax and other related taxes in the State, the governor said the State approached the court to seek an end to perceived infraction of its rights and powers.
Governor Wike, who accused the federal government of emasculating states by usurping their constitutional rights and powers, revealed that the Federal Inland Revenue had surreptitiously written to the National Assembly to amend the Constitution and make collection of VAT exclusive to the Federal government.
He stated that by rejecting electronic transmission of election result, the APC members in the National Assembly had planned coup against Nigerians.