The Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has expressed displeasure over comments made by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Alhaji Atiku Abubakar that what the north needs is a northerner, not an Igbo or a Yoruba person as next president of Nigeria.
Governor Wike said, if such statement is True, it is a threat to the unity of Nigeria at a time when efforts should be concerted in giving every Nigerian a sense of belonging.
Governor Wike spoke on Monday at the international wing of the Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa in Ikwerre Local Government Area, shortly on arrival from Spain. Governor Wike, was accompanied by the governors, Seyi Makinde of Oyo State, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu (Abia) and Samuel Ortom (Benue).
“I don’t believe that my candidate for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) could make such statement.
But assuming he did make that statement, and this is one of the things we have been saying, this country needs to be united and part of the way you unite it is to include everybody.”
The governor stated that the handlers of Alhaji Atiku should also share in the blame for allowing their principal to make such a comment in public which is capable of heightening tension and deepening the feeling of alienation among Nigerians.
“That has now confirmed to me one of the reasons why those of them in their camp, do not want Ayu to resign because they do not want inclusivity.
“I don’t know how those who are packaging the presidential candidate will allow him to make such a statement. I was reading where somebody was saying that it was a direct response to a question he was asked.”
Governor Wike advised the leadership of the PDP to tender an apology to Nigerians while explaining the circumstances in which the statement was made.
“Be that as it may, I don’t think that it was necessary at this time, as people who are going in for election, as people who want Nigerians to trust them to have allowed such a statement to be made. “If it (statement) was made, as they said, I think, as a party, we need to apologize to Nigerians, assuming the (statement) was made.
“People are denying that it was made but if you watch the video, it appears true but people are saying with recent technology, anything can be done.
“This requires further explanation by our party, because Nigerians, as it is today, we can’t go this way if we want this country to remain as the way our finding father’s struggled, laboured, and toiled all the night to see that there is a country called Nigeria.”