From Tony John, Port Harcourt
Former governor of Ondo State, Olusegun Mimiko, has noted that through bold legal challenges, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has deepened the national consciousness concerning the defective federal system and advocated true federalism.
He made the statement when he performed the flag-off of construction work for the dualisation of Azikiwe-Iloabuchi Road in Mile 2 Diobu, Port Harcourt, yesterday.
He said Governor Wike combined such national advocacy with effective political leadership with which he doubtlessly changed the physical landscape of Rivers State.
“Beyond the self evident physical transformation, you (Wike) have stood as a bulwark against those sworn to emasculating the main opposition party, all in their bid to force a one party state down the throats of Nigerians.
“You were at one point virtually a one man countervailing force, defending and protecting our dear Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). You have also, through bold legal challenges, deepened the national consciousness on the defects in the running of our defective federal system.”
The former Ondo State governor said he was sure Governor Wike would remain committed to the struggle to entrench a true federal system that would engender real development across all ethnic nationalities, across all religious persuasions in Nigeria.
He pointed to the urgent need by all well-meaning Nigerians for national unity, which is the required impetus to effectively confront the intractable security and economic challenges.
Governor Wike noted that elders of the state like Azubuike Nmerukini and Austin Opara, mounted pressure on him to intervene on the road being flagged-off.
He said it would the last of such projects to execute within the Port Harcourt metropolis because in keeping with his promises of restoring the Garden City status, every road has been reconstructed.
“As a man, who respect leaders, I have to honour them by making sure this road is awarded and by making sure this road will be completed within six months.”
“This is the last project here in Port Port Harcourt, I think, I’m going to embark upon before I leave office. All the promises I have made in Port Harcourt, I have fulfilled them. Let somebody come and tell me which one I have not fulfilled. Old Government Residential Area, I have finished, New Government Residential Area, I have finished, Ogbum-nu-abali, I have finished, Diobu here, I have finished?”