Govt Names Int’l Conference Centre After Obi Wali


Newly constructed International Conference Center on Chief G. U. Ake Bypass has been named after Senator Obi Wali, Governor Chibuike Amaechi has announced.
Amaechi announced the decision when he played host to his kinsmen and prominent Ikwerre traditional rulers at Government House, Port Harcourt on Friday, under the auspices of the Supreme Council of Ikwerre Traditional Rulers.
He said the government took the decision because late Obi Wali was a national figure and gift to Ikwerre people, hinting that more public buildings would be named after prominent sons and daughters of the state.
The governor said his administration has ensured that projects were evenly spread across the state  in keeping with his detribalized attitude to governance for which, he recalled that the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP) gave him a title for taking away their pains by developing their area hitherto left out of the development plans of previous administrations in the state.
Frowning at the attitude of some Ikwerre politicians who specialise in betraying their own, the Rivers State Governor and Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi criticised the Supervising Minister of Education, Nyesom Wike, who was his former chief of staff, for failing the integrity test where he (Wike) had sworn with the names of his children never to betray him (Amaechi) but now has done so.
Amaechi disclosed this when his kinsmen and prominent Ikwerre traditional rulers visited him at Government House, Port Harcourt on Friday, under the auspices of the Supreme Council of Ikwerre Traditional Rulers.
The governor recalled that in order to convince him to forward his name as ministerial nominee to President Goodluck Jonathan, Wike had sworn with his own children that he would never betray him, but was to betray him after getting his ministerial appointment from President Jonathan.
“I told my friends who are governors, I said when you will be betrayed at the end of 2015, you will almost be in a state of coma because you have not experienced it. Your speech did mention the former Deputy Speaker of House of Representatives, Austin Opara, your speech also mentioned the Minister of State for Education, Nyesom Wike. The Minister of State for Education swore with the names of his children that he would never betray me, that I should put his name forward for minister. I say, he swore with the names of his children.”
“No matter the condition, I will never swear with the names of my children, nothing will make me swear with the names of my children. But if I make the mistake of swearing with the names of my children, nothing outside God will make me betray you. Not because any harm will befall the children… It is the honour you bestow on those children that should make you not to betray whatever word you have given to anybody.
“In fact, if you listen very well, the Minister of State for Education was saying that I wasn’t the person who nominated him until a Rivers delegation went to see the president and the president said, ‘I don’t even know the man (Wike). It was Amaechi that brought him. I stopped him but Amaechi insisted that I must take him (Wike).
“There are not too many elites with character, not too many. In their quest for power and their desire to accumulate wealth, they can sell their mother, some elites can sell their mother.”
Amaechi noted that history would judge those who say one thing and do another as he equally recounted how he had helped persons, only to be betrayed by these same persons.
Amaechi said his policies in government have been to develop all parts of the state.
“I made sure that I prefer to be called a Rivers Governor, not an Ikwerre governor, so I made sure that if we took a road to Ikwerre, we would take it to Gokana”.
Earlier, Chairman of the Supreme Council of Ikwerre Traditional Rulers, Eze Blessing Wagor, acknowledged that Governor Amaechi had been a victim of betrayal in several instances but commended his strength of character and courage in facing up to treacherous behaviour.
He said the governor had helped to install Ikwerre sons in positions of responsibility most of whom he said failed to appreciate him.
“On the 9th day of November, 2000, all the Government recognized Traditional Rulers in Ikwerre-led by the late Eze Epara Rebisi, Eze S. N. Woluchem and the entire people of Ikwerre Ethnic Nationality gathered at the ancient kingdom of Isiokpo and conferred on you the title of Ochi Aliri 1 of Ikwerre. You were then the Honourable Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly. You remain the first man to be so honoured by our people. Ever since, we have studiously watched your conduct, activities, growth and achievements in politics as well as the Governor of Rivers State.
“From the year 1999 to date, Ikwerre has either through you or your instrumentality achieved great heights in our political history. From being the first Ikwerre man to be elected speaker, and consequently governor of the state, you influenced the appointment of an Ikwerre man as vice chancellor of Rivers State University of Science and Technology (RSUST), deputy speaker, House of Representatives, federal electoral commissioner, Nigeria Ambassador to Ukraine, chief judge of Rivers State, president, Customary Court of Appeal and presently, minister of state for education, to mention but a few.
“In the area of governance, you have provided us with good roads, modern schools and functional health centres and hospitals just as you have extended these facilities to other ethnic groups in the state.
“As members of the traditional institution, we have equally heard and seen you face outright deceits, betrayals from very close quarters and associates that should have earned you praises. We have seen you face fire. We have seen you work upon thongs and we have seen you in a capsizing boat. In all of these, you remained solidly undaunted and robustly focused on your mission to Rivers State.
“To say the least, you have brought honour and pride to us and the entire people of Ikwerre ethnic nationality. Let us assure you that all the government recognized traditional rulers and our people are solidly behind you”.