By ABUBAKAR YUNUS Abuja
Less than three days after promising logistics support to the presidential candidate of Labour Party (LP), Peter Obi, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has said the state government will give logistics support to the presidential candidate of the New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, whenever he comes to the state for his campaigns.
This is as he accused the National Chairman of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) of being behind the exit of Kwankwaso from the party, saying that the NNPP presidential candidate’s exit from the party was a loss considering the voting strength of Kano State.
Wike spoke during the inauguration of Mgbuitanwo Road in Emohua local government area of the state, which was performed by the former Kano State Governor.
The governor said: “As I told Peter Obi when he came, I am also telling you that if you are coming for campaign here, I will give you logistics support for you to campaign.
“He is a former governor; the only difference between us is that he is former and I am present. He is a former Minister and I am a former Minister. When you were a governor, you performed excellently well and everybody knows in this country. I am not afraid to say I will give you all the logistics support. I will do it because protocol demands that I should do it.
“These are people who meant well for this country. You are not preaching based on ethnicity, you are not preaching based on religion. You are selling yourself to Nigerians. It is not to say don’t vote for Yoruba man, don’t vote for Ibo man, what we need is a leader that will bring Nigeria together.”
Describing the NNPP presidential candidate as a man of integrity, Wike stated that he warned the leadership of PDP of allowing Kwankwaso to exit the party considering the importance of Kano State to the politics of this country, especially in the area of voting strength, but was ignored.
The governor said: “Special guest of honour, let me thank you; people may not understand. When you wanted to leave PDP, I came to your house in Abuja and said sir, don’t leave the party. I pleaded with you two times.
“Those who never meant well for this party, who will want to take control where they did not sow, those that want to reap where they never sowed, they said, leave Kwankwaso to go; who is he? Let him go. After all, I was Senate President when he was Deputy Speaker, House of Representatives.
“I said no, he is an asset to the party in Kano State. Kano is very very important for our party. Therefore, whatever it takes, let’s keep him, let’s manage him. They said no let him go.
“I said the more the merrier; we are an opposition party, we cannot continue to drive our people away. Whoever that is angry, let’s keep him but they said no. They said oh, I want to support Kwankwaso. I said no, but with him in Kano, there is the likelihood that it will be better for us.
“But, if we remove him or allow him to go, the repercussion will be heavy. Kwankwaso left. He told me when he was going that his people who are remaining in PDP will support me and they did. That is why we talk about integrity.
“Sir, you are a man in integrity. It is unfortunate we are not in the same political party but God will help at the appropriate time. People like this are people that should be in the leadership of the country. Yes, I have no apologies to anybody.”
Inaugurating the road, with dual drainages and street lights, the NNPP presidential candidate, Rabiu Musa Kwankwaso, lauded Wike for constructing a very high quality road for the Mgbuitanwo community.
Kwankwaso said: “I want to thank the governor for constructing this high quality road in this community.
“I believe this is the time other colleagues should start looking out. They should start studying the situation and they should learn from the experiences of those of us who had been there.
“We took our time like Governor Wike to do what was right. That is why by the grace of God and the support of our people, any day, any time, no matter the political party we belong, our people will follow us because they believe in our capacity, our performance and our integrity.”