From TONY JOHN, Port Harcourt
Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, said the decision on which presidential candidate to moblise votes for in the forthcoming 2023 general election has been taken and would be revealed in January, 2023.
Governor Wike spoke at the inauguration of the Rumuokwurusi- Elimgbu Flyover (10th flyover) in Rumuokwurusi Town, Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state on Thursday.
He assured that, from January 2023, he will first embark on a state-wide campaign tour to tell Rivers people who they should vote.
Thereafter, he informed that he would undertake a nation-wide campaign tour to tell Nigerians the most preferred presidential candidate requiring their votes.
He said Nigerians need to know a reliable candidate that they can trust to deliver the needed national transformation with the expected capability and results.
“So, from January next year, I will campaign to my people who they will vote for. So, all of you who have been in suspense, who have been saying all kinds of things, abusing me, wait, January has come.
“Not only will I tell them where they will vote, I will move from state to state and tell them why they should vote for the people I think they should vote for. Nothing will happen.”
Governor Wike pointed to the ills some person have caused with their political inconsistency, associations and philosophy and wondered if they can in good conscience say they have been fair to Nigerians and are fit to lead them.
“Those of you who have never been stable. You move from PDP (Peoples Democratic Party) to there, and you moved from there back to PDP. Those of you who campaigned in 2015, telling Nigerians if they vote for PDP they are voting for insurgency. If they vote for PDP, they’re voting for corruption.
“Wait, all of us will reply. We will tell Nigerians this thing that you said, how far now. Where do you still stand now? Is it the same PDP or a new PDP?”
Governor Wike insisted that going into an election and winning the needed victory is beyond mere appearances on television shows, casting aspersions on others and talking big.
“So, all of you appearing on television abusing me, don’t waist your saliva again. January has come. All those of you who are telling Nigerians that you used to have 40 shoes, you used to have 50 wrist watches, time has come to convert those shoes and wrist watches to votes. It’s not to be on the podium and raise your shoes high. And raise your wrist watch high. Time has come to convert it to votes.”
Governor Wike also advised some Rivers politicians who now reside in Abuja to know that the 2023 election will confirm who truly has political influence on Rivers electorate.
He said 2023 general election will also be used to retire these politicians, and urged then to return home and do their campaigns.
The governor said the State government is not opposed to any political party or group holding political rallies. He reiterated that any party or group planning to use government owned schools should be ready to pay the non-refundable security fee.
He urged those politicians to stop telling lies and be bold to let their people know what they have capacity to do and cannot do.
“Let me also use the opportunity to advise those of them who said that they are our brothers in Abuja. This 2023 election will confirm to us in Rivers State who are those that have influence on voters.
“Who are those that their people will listen to and vote? It is not only for you to be in Abuja and tell them whatever you’re telling them. Come home because our polling booths are not going to be in Abuja.”
He further added, “This election will retire people in 2023. If they win us, we go. If we win them, they go. In fact, they have already gone.”
Governor Wike also said his administration has established a new political concept that will deepen understanding on how to endear the electorate and secure their votes.
He explained that the PDP in Rivers State will not engage in vote buying, but will depend on the numerous projects executed in all the twenty three Local Government Areas, consistent payment of pension and gratuity by his administration to win the 2023 general election.
Providing the description of the project, Rivers State Commissioner for Works, Dr. George-Kelly Dakorinima Alabo said the Rumuokwurusi -Elimgbu Flyover, started on 28th January 2022 was delivered in less than 10 months.
He explained that the length of the flyover is 820metres, has the width size at the descend as 30.65 width and at the upper pass, the width is 17.35 meters.
Dr. Alabo said the flyover will ease traffic flow, and service as alternative route to connect traffic flow to the Port Harcourt International Airport.
The Project manager, Julius Berger Plc, Engineer Taner, commended governor Wike for the confidence reposed in the company in the Rivers State government urban renewal initiative.