By Mfata Mfata, coordinator
We have read with shock and dismay, a press statement by Mr. Simeon Nwakaudu, Gov. Wike’s Special Assistant on Electronic Media, berating the GOC of the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General Jamil Sarhem, over an alleged involvement in oil bunkering activities. According to the statement, Gov. Wike accused the GOC of running an illegal oil bunkering squad as a means of financing his pursuit for the exalted position of Chief Of Army Staff.
Ordinarily, this bogus accusation and public outcry from Gov. Wike would not have come to us as a surprise in view of his antecedents, but given his professed panting for peace and claimed repentance, we find it quite shocking and conflicting that the same Governor who publicly sued for peace is still the one fanning the embers of discord and acrimony in Rivers State.
Our interest on issues concerning Rivers State and indeed Nigeria as a whole is born solely out of patriotism, hence, we are compelled as a watchdog in the society to raise the red flag when we perceive that certain actions or inactions of government are against the public interest.
It is commonplace to assert that peace and security are twin imperatives intimately and intricately linked making it impossible for one to function in isolation from the other. Accordingly, the issue of peace and security must be addressed strategically with integrated policies and programs instead of mere verbal enunciations aimed only at satisfying political whims and the demands of passing moments without workable plans and strategy for implementation.
Considering these fierce allegations against the GOC 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, a major stakeholder in the security outfit of the State, one wonders how Wike intends to achieve the desired peace. Or should we consider Wike’s call for peace a mere political lip service intended to act as means of garnering public sympathy and absolving himself of blames in the bartered and failed security architecture of the State?
How is it possible for Gov. Wike to truly claim he seeks peace when he had already set up a judicial panel of enquiry whose sole agenda is to indict security agencies who were brave enough to resist his financial overtures during the election and those who are perceived not to be in his good books or on the same political page with him?
Gov. Wike continues to entertain the masses with his unending theatrics. We find it difficult to connect Wike’s incessant attacks on the Nigerian Army and other security outfits who should ordinarily be his partners in combating criminality and improving security in the State, with his call for peace.
The Governor claims to have let out the olive branch to all stakeholders in the State in his quest for peace yet publicly engages heads of security agencies in avoidable cold wars, thereby giving these perpetrators of crime an indirect nod to carry on with criminality unabated knowing fully well that the governor and security operatives are at loggerheads.
We urge Wike to quit blowing hot and cold and put governance in the front burner of his administration. Elections have come and gone, it is only fair to expect that governance must now take centre-stage. Sadly, our lot has been that of endless petty politicking that has no bearing with governance and improved security of lives and properties.
Elsewhere in Lagos State, the Governor-Elect engaged in a leadership course in Europe in preparation for governance but here in Rivers State, Gov. Wike is busy brewing bad blood, animosity and vendetta through senseless politics and witch-hunt.
We advise Gov. Wike to borrow a leaf from President Buhari and other state governors who are preparing and planning for a low-key inauguration on May 29, 2019, instead of the oversized 155-man transition Committee he had set up to handover to himself, leaving us in a deep worry over the chances of Rivers State advancing beyond corruption and criminality.
Until Gov Wike understands that the quest for peace is combined with a sincere quest for security, our dear State may continue to suffer deteriorating state of security and underdevelopment.
In this regard we consider it necessary to draw his attention once again to Dr. Chidi Amuta’s panacea for peace in Rivers State.
Finally, we pray Gov Wike to divest himself completely of his biggest phobia “the fear of Amaechi” and face governance a duty he has barely performed since becoming Governor of Rivers State.