From Tony John, Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has, again, decried the dearth of effective political leadership in Nigeria.
He said such effective leadership, when identified, should place service above self and work to secure enduring development for the people and the country.
Wike made the observation at the inauguration of the dualised Ogbunuabali-Eastern Bypass Road performed by former governor of Sokoto State, Aliyu Wamakko, yesterday.
He noted how wrong it is for people to think leadership is a function of political party, when it is actually about the mindset of the individual.
“Leadership is not about party, leadership is about individual. Party is only a vehicle to actualise your ambition to be able to tell your people I have this capacity, I have this quality to render services to you. If you take me away today from Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to another party, I will still perform. So, it is not because I’m in PDP that I’m performing. It is because I have that passion for my people. It is because I have the commitment to serve my people. Take me to YPP, I will become whatever I will become there, I will perform. Take me to any party, I will perform. So, it is not party that makes you to perform.”
Governor Wike said his undying love, passion and commitment to render effective service to Rivers people have sufficiently differentiated him from other politicians.
That was why, he asserted, there is a sustained commitment to add value to life, impact change with the infrastructural revolution and make the state better.
Governor Wike said while others had used the economic hardship as excuse not to render leadership and service to their people, he found a more rewarding way to sustain the delivery of projects in Rivers.
He took a swipe at certain politicians of the state who he said misconstrued his assertion on Monday, that he was in charge of the state.
“Because some people went to school late, they don’t understand when somebody says I am in charge of this state. I never said I am in charge of votes in this state. But, I know I can talk to my people and my people will listen to me. Some people say, I have only one vote, I agree. I can’t vote two times. I will only vote once. But, because of the services I have rendered to the people of this state, the state will listen to me,” he said.
The governor said he had remained a consistent politician, not playing double game and urged Rivers people to be happy that they have a governor who will always defend the state.
He thanked the people of Ogbunuabali for their cooperation while the project lasted even if they had initially rejected it.
He used the occasion to lift the ban on youths activities in Ogbunuabali community and announced the release of N2 billion he promised the community.
Inaugurating the Ogbunuabali-Eastern Bypass Road, Wamakko noted with the leadership capacity that governor Wike had demonstrated in serving Rivers people.
Wamakko said any well meaning government should serve to satisfy the yearnings and aspirations of the governed. He said as a ‘talk and do governor’, Wike has done adequately well for his people.
Commissioner for Works, Dakorinama George-Kelly, said the road was a single carriage way of 7.3meters wide but it was totally scarified and completely rebuilt
South-South Regional Manager of Julius Berger Nigeria Plc., Juergen Fischer, said they started with the first project of the Wike’s administration, operation zero potholes which culminated into the ongoing urban renewal programme.
According to him, they were delighted working with Wike to achieve his development dreams for Rivers and thanked him for the opportunity.