Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state has commissioned the Abonnema Ring Road project in the state even as he threw a challenge to the opposition party in the state to acknowledge the truth that he has performed well beyond their imagination.
The Rivers StateGovernor says the non-stop inauguration of completed projects in the state hassilenced critics, and members of the opposition party, the All ProgressivesCongress (APC).
Wike stated this at theinauguration of Abonnema Ring Road in Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of thestate by the former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, yesterday.
The governor saidinstead of the opposition to address how they can encourage their APC governorsto roll out projects for inauguration as done by PDP governors, they werehiding under the guise of speaking for local contracting firms.
He described allegations that his administration has refused to empower local contracting firms to handle projects’ construction as a sheer falsehood.
Wike said some of theprojects that have been inaugurated this week such as the Sime-Nonwa-Kira Roadwas handled by Rivers construction firm, Lubrik Construction Company, while theAbonnema Ring Road was done by O.K. Isokariari Construction Company
According to him, hisadministration was mindful of empowering Rivers people, encouraging andtrusting them to handle some critical projects because he believes in theircapacity.
“Members of the AllProgressives Congress (APC) have said I should mention those whom, locally, wehave empowered. O.K. Isokariari Company is a Rivers company. They did Phase Oneof Okochiri Road.
They have also done this Abonnema Ring Road.
“Lubrik Construction Company Ltd is a local company too. As we go on, we willbegin to mention them. Our own is not to develop others without developing ourown people. I am happy with the contractor. We will continue to engage you sothat you will employ Rivers sons and daughters.
“You see how we have silenced them in the state. We commissioned projects until the 24th of December, 2020. We have started this year on 4th January 2021. Let them tell their people to roll out their projects and call people.”
The governor said thePDP was different from APC because it always keeps its promises to the people,delivers good governance and quality projects that satisfy the yearnings of thepeople.
“For us, as a party andgovernment, whatever promises we make, we must fulfil them. We are not a partythat promises and fail or gives excuses.
“We are a party that when we make a promise, we must fulfill the promise because we owe it to the people. That is why I have told our people, we have no choice, that the only hope this country has today is the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).”
Wike said it was not the length of the ring road that matters but its importance to the people.
He stated that the ringroad now serves as an alternative route in and out of Abonnema and Obonomatowns.
He announced that the adjoining mangrove would be dredged to provide land to thepeople of Abonnema and Obonoma that they can use for future development.
“Having done this, thenext thing for us to do is sand-filling so that they can have land to build on.I know how important land is to them.
“I, therefore, direct the Special Adviser on Special Projects to meet with theSecretary to the State Government (SSG) to make sure we award a contract ofsand-filling of Abonnema-Obonoma areas.”
While commissioning theproject, the former Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu, said byexecuting projects in the hinterland other than the city, the Wikeadministration has demonstrated equity and justice to Rivers people.
He noted that thelessons to be learnt from the series of projects’ inauguration in Rivers Stateby governors and other political leaders, should be for them to get inspiredand replicate such development in their various states and at the nationallevel.
“I believe it when I said that we should not be ashamed to say we are learningfrom our colleague on what to do. If we need help, we must seek help fromwhoever we can get help from, and that’s the only way we can develop.”
Ekweremadu also enjoinedthe Federal Government to explore the possibility of getting assistance fromforeign countries that have such capacity in order to protect the sovereigntyof the country, its people and democracy.
“Today, we arechallenged as a country in terms of security. Out of sheer national pride, wehave not been able to accept help and assistance from those who know better,who can help us to secure this country.
“This is an opportunity for me to call on our leaders, just like I am saying that other states should learn from Rivers State, we in Nigeria must also accept assistance from other countries in order to secure our borders, secure our democracy, secure our place and secure the citizens of this country. That is the only way to go. We must learn from those who have done better than us.”
In his remarks, the Commissioner for Works, Hon Elloka Tasie-Amadi said prior to the construction of the phase two of the ring road, there was only one entry route into Abonnema.
He explained that the phase two of the project, which was initiated by Governor Wike administration, now serves as alternate route for the people.