Speaking at the 2020 Rivers State New Year Banquet at the Government House, Port Harcourt on Wednesday night, Governor Wike emphasized that no particular ethnic group gave him support more than the rest, adding that that explained the massive developments witnessed in all the LGAs in the State.
"I have no grudge against any local government area. Every Local Government Area gave me support. All those carrying Ethnic Wars cannot succeed. I was not elected on the strength of Ethnicity.
Governor Wike said anyone who aspires for the office of Governor in Rivers State must show the people that he or she has the capacity, and that “you can work for Rivers people.
He said that he has projects in all the 23 Local Government Areas. He said the facts on ground prove that he has worked diligently for Rivers people.
Governor Wike called on Rivers people to unite and promote the interest of Rivers State.
He said: "In 2020, we should work together as a people as a people. Those who don't believe in this state are the people who want to raise unnecessary sentiments.
Governor Wike said that contrary to claims by some opposition politicians, he has deliberately invested in the empowerment of Rivers people. He, however, regretted that most people mismanage empowerment funds.
He said that his administration released N4billion as business Grants to Rivers women and young entrepreneurs, but beneficiaries of the grants failed repay the revolving loans..
The Governor added the State Government released N50OMILLION as loans to private medical professionals who own hospitals, but the scheme could not be sustained, because the doctors didn't repay their loans.
He noted that all the building contracts under the State Universal Basic Education Board, amounting to over N3billion were handled by Rivers contractors.
Governor Wike assured that he will continue with the development of all parts of Rivers State in 2020.
The Governor told the audience which included Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal and his Bauchi State counterpart, Senator Bala Mohammed that Rivers people will always work for the unity of the country.
He stated that Rivers State is central to national unity, noting that Rivers State and her people will continue to defend the unity of the country.
He said: "Rivers State has been key to the unity of the country. We believe in the unity of Nigeria. In believing in the unity of the country, always give us our right."
He said that the state passed through political challenges in 2019. He recalled that Rivers people stood up to defend their mandate.
"Rivers people stood up and said they will not allow darkness to take over light. We couldn't have succeeded without the the support of the people, the Legislature and the Judiciary ", he said.
The Governor said that no arm of government can do it alone without the support of other arms of government.
"The Executive must work harmoniously with the Legislature and Judiciary for the development of the country ", he said.
He said that the truth must be told at all times; because that is the only way the society will develop.
He reiterated that Rivers State is a Christian State, noting that security is improving in the State because God has intervened in the affairs of the State.
Governor Wike said that he will always promote the interest of Rivers State. He said he will never mortgage the interest of the state on any account.
He emphasized that he will continue to advance state-wide development. He said no local government area has been neglected by his administration.
"When your conscience is clear and you are convinced you are doing the right thing, just go ahead.
In his speech at the occasion, Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal said that working with the Rivers State Governor, they will continue to deepen the friendship between Rivers and Sokoto States.
Tambuwal commended Rivers people for standing firm to defend their mandate, in the face of plots to rig the election in the State.
"We commend the good people of Rivers State for standing firm in 2019 to defend their mandate. You stood for democracy and you stood for Rivers State.
"We monitored what happened. We took note of how Rivers people collectively stood for democracy ", he said.
The Sokoto State Governor said that the same Major Mustapha who attempted to rig Rivers election was exported to Sokoto State after the election was declared inclusive, but he also failed.
He said Nigeria will continue to wax stronger as long as leaders remain committed to good governance.
He said: "When you talk about governance and performance across the country, the name of Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike continues to come up
Bauchi State Governor, Senator Bala Mohammed said that the government and people of Bauchi State always come to show solidarity because of the contributions of Governor Wike to national development and good governance.
"He is kind and has always provided the rallying point for people of this generation to discuss the development of this country ", he said.
He said that the Rivers State Governor has become the new face of leadership in Nigeria. He said that Rivers State is lucky to have Governor Wike at this time of its history.
The Bauchi State Governor noted that Governor Wike represents the best in terms of leadership in the state.
Senator Mohammed said that the Niger Delta is critical to balance of power. He said that the zone that lays the golden egg is key to the development of the country.
"We cannot play with the Niger Delta because it is the goose that lays the golden egg. It is important to the politics of the country ", he said.
Secretary to the Rivers State Government, Dr Tammy Danagogo said the 2020 New Year State Banquet is an event to celebrate the successes of the previous year and look forward to a glorious year ahead.
He said though the State had negative electoral challenges, Rivers people were able to secure their mandate during the 2019 elections.
Danagogo said that the victory of Rivers State over the struggle for Soku Oil Wells was the icing on the 2019 cake.
"The Soku Oil Wells victory was a masterstroke from Governor Wike. We are looking forward to a glorious 2020, with Governor Wike leading from the front ", he said.
The Seki Dance Troupe held the audience spellbound, as they showcased the rich cultural heritage of Rivers State.
Former Attorney General of Rivers State, Chief Adokiye Amiesimaka proposed a toast for the legislative arm of Government. He said that Rivers State enjoys an exemplary relationship between the Legislature and the Executive Arms of Government.
He urged the National Assembly to take concrete steps to ensure that the electoral system is strengthened to such a level that it would be impossible to use the Nigerian Army to subvert the will of Nigerians as was attempted in Rivers State during the 2019.
In a toast to the Judiciary, Rt. Hon Enemi George said the Judiciary is significant because it is critical to economic development. He expressed happiness that the Rivers State Judiciary has grown to function effectively for the development of Rivers State.
Justice Elsie Thompson, who proposed the toast for the Executive Arm of Government, lauded the Rivers State Governor for his efforts at the development. She urged Rivers people to always pray for the Executive Arm of Government to deliver good governance. She described the Wike-led Executive as the Best in the country.
Leaders and friends of Rivers State joined the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike and his wife to cut the 2020 New Year Cake.