The Director in charge of NGO and Political Pressure Groups of the Rivers State PDP Campaign Council, Ambassador Marvin Yobana has dismissed insinuations by critics of Governor Wike that the incoming administration of Sir Siminialayi Fubara would be influenced by the governor when he leaves office.
Speaking as guest on African Independent Television (AIT)’s Matters Arising on Monday, Ambassador Yobana assured that Fubara would not be stooge to anyone.
He reminded the cynics that Wike had on several occasions made it clear that he is not going to influence the governor-elect when he leaves office.
“Governor Wike has said it clearly that he is not going to influence the Governor-elect, not even in his appointments. Even in a recent media chat, the governor reiterated that he is not interested in anybody”, Yobana said, stressing that the Governor-elect is a very credible person and can be counted upon.
He added: “There is no way Sim Fubara can be a stooge. He was nominated by the party. He went through the primaries and won resoundingly because he is somebody that has gone through the ranks of governance and he understands what it means in terms of administration”.
He said insinuations from some political parties that the election was manipulated in favour of the PDP is ‘neither here nor there’.
He explained: “What happened was that Rivers people decided on which party to trust. They came out enmasse to vote for the candidate of their choice. Resoundingly, they gave the mandate to the PDP for another four years.
“This is not a fluke. It is something that anybody who has been to Rivers State will understand. You see infrastructural development all across the 23 Local Government Areas of the state. You also see governance that is people oriented, where communities make input on what kind of projects they need.
“You see a government led by Nyesom Wike that had put Rivers State at the pedestrian of development. As we speak, you see a state where all the lawmakers work in cooperation with the Executive arm to make sure that laws that would protect those who live and do business in Rivers State are done properly.
“You see a state that is very low in terms of insecurity. You don’t have insecurity like you have in some parts of the country. You see a government that is working and you see a party that has chosen somebody who has gone through the civil service, raised through the rank of being a school teacher to the civil service. He became a Director, Permanent Secretary and later, Accountant General of the state”.
Ambassador Yobana noted that the governor-elect has gone through these and became a seasoned administrator who can be trusted because, according to him, Sir Fubara is down to earth.
“That’s why you saw what happened to the PDP on the 18th day of March. The governorship and all the House of Assembly seats was given to the PDP”, he said.
Asked to comment on allegations by APC and the other parties, that the election was hijacked by alleged PDP thugs who were said to have intimidated and suppressed voters with some reports of deaths, Yobana said: “Well the only evidence is the reports released by the police. One was reports that some members of Social Democratic Party, SDP, were arrested with BVAS machines and some election materials where they were trying to manipulate the process.
“A member of SDP running for House of Representatives in Khana Gokana federal constituency was also arrested and the video clips are all over the social media.
All cases of violence or thuggery we had were perpetrated by the opposition namely APC and SDP. While we were campaigning for the past five months, selling our manifesto and telling them what we will do, they were not campaigning.
“Because we sold our manifesto clearly, the people came out and voted for us. So, the issue of thuggery and violence is neither here nor there. So, those actions they were claiming, were actually perpetrated by their members and their parties and not by the PDP”, he said.
On the Governor-elect and expectations from Rivers people, Ambassador Yobana said: “He is definitely going to work and build on the legacies of Governor Nyesom Wike because his administration has done tremendously well in terms of Infrastructure, healthcare and in other areas”.