By Simeon Nwakaudu
Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, Governor of Rivers State, is Nigeria’s icon of democracy and the nation’s political conscience. He is a politician with a difference. He plays politics for the good of the country.
Strategically, God annointed Governor Wike for a time like this. A time when Nigerians need a consistent voice to stand in the gap for them in defence of their rights, freedom and democracy.
Through his commitment to the welfare of the people, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has become the nightmare of the oppressor. A target for the enemies of Nigeria and democracy. Despite the unending personal attacks, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike always stands with the people. He confronts the bully at personal costs.
That we are on the verge of sacking the worst Federal Government in Nigeria’s history is because Nyesom Ezenwo Wike galvanised the forces of light to rebuild the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). Many Nigerians are quick to forget that the failed APC Federal Government worked night and day to end the existence of the PDP.
During this period of persecution, many PDP leaders were forced to abandon the party in exchange for their political survival. It was Wike who provided the base for the reconstruction process for the incoming ruling party. He also provided the heart for the recovery. Today, the PDP is up and running, controlling the National Assembly and ready to return to the Presidential Villa.
Many have forgotten that it was in Port Harcourt that Governor Wike checked the excesses of the failed APC Federal Government on their clampdown on the judiciary. Governor Wike stood up to the security services that the outgoing APC Federal Government used to effect illegal arrests of judges in a bid to intimidate the judiciary.
As early as 2am on that fateful day, Governor Wike stood his ground and insisted that the said Federal High Court judge can only be arrested through established processes. Since then, the failed APC Federal Government has stopped the direct intimidation of judges, even though they have continued with their criminal intimidation .
Governor Wike leads from the front. He is a practitioner of what he preaches. If he tells his supporters to stand up to defend their votes, he shows them the way forward. During the rerun elections, Governor Wike led Rivers people to stop Rivers SARS Commander,Akin Fakorede from robbing collated results at the Rivers East Senatorial District Collation Centre.
It was this proactive leadership that ensured that Rivers State emerged victorious through the several rerun elections orchestrated by the enemies of the state.
In all, Governor Wike has raised the bar on the delivery of projects. He has changed the dynamics and placed a clear message before all Nigerians. That with commitment and determination, a leader can deliver for his people irrespective of the attempts at distractions.
Governor Wike has shown that there is no excuse for failure. Once a leader gets a mandate, he is under obligation to perform and change the fortunes of his people.
All across Rivers State, the governor has planted projects. In the areas of infrastructure, healthcare, education, land reclamation, empowerment , water supply and rural electrification.
He plays his politics with a human touch. It has always been about the people. Their welfare, their growth and their survival. He defends the people, even at the expense of personal comfort.
Governor Wike is a workaholic. There is no time to rest as the job needs to get done. And in every corner of the state, the governor is entrenching development. The people are feeling the impact of his commitment to good governance.
The Rivers State Governor has used his projects to deliberately promote the unity of Nigeria. He is a known unifier, building bridges of friendship across the country.
During the third year anniversary of his first term, Governor Wike invited traditional rulers, leaders and politicians from the six geo-political zones to participate in the commissioning of projects.
His investments in the security of lives and property have transformed Port Harcourt into the nation’s destination of choice for conferences, seminars and events. Despite a few challenges, Rivers State is one of the most secure locations in the country.
He has made gender inclusion in governance a top priority, ensuring that women get the right political leverage to contribute to the development of the state. Today, the Deputy Governor of Rivers State is a woman, the Chief Judge and President Court of Appeal are women, while the 23 Vice Chairmen of the Local Government Areas are women. Through deliberate actions, Governor Wike is positioning Rivers women for greater exploits.
What the women are enjoying is the same loaf that the youths of Rivers State are enjoying. The governor has made youth empowerment and political placement a key pillar of his governance structure. The Local Government councils, State Assembly and State Executive Council have the greatest involvement of youths in the history of Rivers State.
In all the political horse-trading and struggles, Governor Wike has always given God the pride of place. He has elevated the worship of God and ensured that God leads Rivers State to greater heights. To ensure the unity of the Christian family in the state, the governor built the Ecumenical Centre and also created a platform for Churches to easily hold programmes in partnership with the Rivers State Government. As we celebrate his birthday, Rivers State is known worldwide as a Christian State. A state dedicated unto God.
He is the pride of Rivers State. A man that epitomizes love for his people, love for country and love for development. He is the true example of a modern pro-people leader that is selfless and caring.
December 13 is a special day. It is a day that God created one of Africa’s leading lights and empowered him with courage, mass development initiatives, political sagacity, leadership capacity, love for his people and willingness to sacrifice for the good of the country. It is a day that God sent Nyesom Ezenwo Wike to be one of the major pilots of this generation.
Therefore, as we celebrate, we must key into the Nyesom Wike frequency ahead of the 2019 elections. This translates to a second term for the people’s governor, the election of PDP’s Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar and the election of a PDP dominated National and State Assemblies. To achieve this, we must adopt the Wike techniques of eternal vigilance, strategic planning and implementation, courageous defence of due process in the electoral space and insistence that the will of the people must prevail.
Happy Birthday to Nigeria’s Icon of Democracy and Good Governance. We wish sound health and greater capacity in the days ahead. He is a worthy Nigerian, needed in the task of sacking the worst Federal Government in the history of Nigeria.