Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, has disclosed that the presidential candidate he and his political allies would support was someone adjudged to have integrity, who keeps his word and would not renege on any agreement brokered.
He stated this at Rumuji-Odegwe town where the Rivers State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) held a rally to flag-off its campaign in Emohua Local Government Area,last Wednesday.
Wike enjoined some leaders like Ohna Sergeant Awuse and party stalwarts in the state anxiously waiting for directive on the presidential election, to continue to exercise patience while the decision on preferred presidential candidate was concluded soon.
“Chief Awuse has said, ‘we are tired of waiting.’ Indeed, we are tired of waiting. But don’t worry. You’ve been patient. Your being patient will not be taken for granted. The bell will soon ring. When you hear the bell, listen to where the bell is coming from, and go and do what you have been told to do.
“I can assure you all these buccaneers, all these vampires; we will teach them a lesson. All those who said Rivers State is not important: we’ll tell them that Rivers State is important. If you play with us, we’ll play with you. If they play with us, we’ll play with them. Enough is enough.
“So, let me apologise and plead with Ohna, Nne-New-Eli Emohua Local Government, it is almost time, endure. Very soon, you’ll hear and I can assure you, no going back.”
The governor said he has been waiting patiently for those who threatened to expel him from the PDP to act out their threat.
He noted that those issuing such threat were not oblivious that PDP was already polarised, and taking such action against him and his allies would lead to the extinction of the party.
The Rivers State governor explained that the state has what it takes to withstand those he described as buccaneers and vampires already in the stock-in-trade of selling their conscience for pot of pottage.
Speaking on the gubernatorial candidate of the PDP in Rivers State, Sir SiminialayiFubara, the governor asserted that he has been part of his administration, well knowledgeable of the workings of government, and poised to consolidate on the gains recorded.
Wike said, together with Fubara, he has scheduled a meeting with Julius Berger Nigeria PLC to finalise the award of contract to dualise the Emohua by East-West Road to Tema in Asari-Toru LGA.
This, according to him, would be in addition to other projects his administration has delivered in Emohua Local Government Area.
The governor pointed out that the Emohua Secondary School demolished by the administration of his predecessor was being reconstructed.
He said some other projects delivered in the area by his administration include the Isiodu road, Rumuodogo1 and 2 roads, Elele-Alimini internal roads, Campus of Rivers State University sited in the area, Iba-Isiokpo road, and the Akpabu-Odido road.
In his address, the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in Rivers State for the 2023 general election, Sir SiminialayiFubara, said he would ensure that the vast arable land in Emohuawas used for mechanised agriculture and agro-allied industries to create jobs, and boost the economy of the state and that of the area.
He also pledged to maintain the peace in Emohua by investing in the security architecture of the area, construct more roads, schools, hospitals, and electricity, when elected governor of Rivers State.
Fubarasaid, “A tiger cannot give birth to a sheep; Governor NyesomWike is a tiger, whoever he supports must also be a tiger. Emohua people, you call Governor Wike a tiger because he has given you good roads, you call him a tiger because he has given you security, you call him a tiger because he has built schools for you, including the one your sister’s son brought down and refused to rebuild. Fubara is a tiger too, and I will continue from where Governor Wike will stop.
“What are the things I will do when I take over? That security that Governor Wike has given to you, we will sustain it. The challenges along the road that you share with the Kalabari people will be put to an end.
“You have the land, the natural vegetation for agriculture, luckily for us, Governor Wike has constructed roads for accessibility, we will give you mechanised agriculture and create jobs for the youths.
“We will make sure that the few communities that do not have electricity in the local government area are reconnected to the national grid.
“We are not going to be a government that will come and talk and dance in your face without attending to your needs, we will sit down with you, look at your challenges, and address them.
“Yes, you asked us not to campaign because Emohua is already secured for us, but you should not rest on your oars, you still need to do more until the victory is official. Go back to your various wards and units to sensitise more people on the need to vote PDP in the governorship, National Assembly, and state House of Assembly elections,” the guber candidate added.
Fubara thanked Emohua people for their show of solidary, and solicited support that would translate into wining votes for his governorship bid.
He assured that the next administration under him would sustain the security already experienced in Emohua, and would ensure issue of kidnappings was a thing of the past.
In his speech, National Vice Chairman of PDP, South-South Zone, Chief Dan Orbih, announced that Rivers PDP under Wike scoring 99.9percent in performance arising from the assessment carried out by a team in the PDP zonal office.
“I want to sincerely thank the people of Emohua for the massive support shown to the Peoples Democratic Party in Rivers State. With what I am seeing here today, Emohua is PDP and PDP is Emohua. I am very proud to be part of today’s event.
“Few weeks ago, I put together a team to give me an on-the-spot assessment of PDP in the South-South, the interim report gave Governor NyesomWike 99.9percent in terms of performance. Let me use this opportunity to congratulate NyesomWike for his outstanding performance as governor of Rivers State,” he said.
He charged members of the party to ensure continuity of the party in office in Rivers State to enable consolidation.
Orbih commended the people of Emohua Local Government Area for turning up in large numbers for the rally.
Rivers State Chairman of PDP, Amb Desmond Akawor, presented flags to the candidates contesting for the various elective positions in the area.
In his speech, the Chairman, Rivers State PDP Campaign Council, Bror Felix Obuah, noted that Emohua people were already “Sim-plified”, and were willing to reciprocate with 100percent votes in appreciation of the numerous development projects delivered in the area by Wike.
On his part, Chairman, Emohua Local Government Council, Dr.Chidi Lloyd, described the event as a victory rally because the people were resolved to resoundingly demonstrate their support by delivering massive votes on the election days.
The King of Emohua Kingdom, Ohna Sergeant Awuse, noted that the administration of Wike has given to his kingdom more projects than they deserved, adding that the people were of one accord to go wherever he goes concerning the forthcoming elections.
LGA Boss Vows To Deliver Fubara, Others In Rivers
The Chairman of Oyigbo Local Government Area in Rivers State, Hon. Akara Okechukwu, has reiterated that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) would win all positions from governor to state House of Assembly.
He stated that the foundation of victory had been laid by the Governor of the state, Chief Nyesom Wike, following his infrastructure development successes in the state.
Okechukwu said this while reacting after the state PDP campaign team visited his area, last Saturday, saying that the people of Oyigbowere ready to reciprocate what the present administration has done for the LGA in every aspect.
“I have no fear, and I am convinced that the Governorship candidate of PDP Siminialayi Fubara and other state candidates of the PDP will win.
“The people of Oyigbo have vowed to vote massively for PDP because that is the only way to pay back Governor Wike for his good works, mostly in Oyigbo.
“As I speak, 95percent of people living in the area have their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs), and this indicates sure victory for our great party. I thank the people for coming out enmasse for the campaign, I am really happy,” Okechukwu said.
Speaking, Chairman, Revenue Committee of the LGA, Senibo Daniel Chijindu, described the massive turn out as historic, saying that it was an indication of total victory.
“I will say that the massive turn out of people was historic because this is the first time people came out enmasse for campaign. Honestly, this is an indication that Oyigbo was ‘Simplified’ and was totally for PDP.
“Governor Wike has given Rivers State, a facelift in all ramifications. That is why Oyigbo people said they are for PDP in totality,” he said.
The revenue boss advised those who register for PVC should go and collect their PVC because that is only way to sustain the good governance of PDP.
Also speaking, former commissioner for commerce and industry and stakeholder of PDP in Oyigbo, Hon. Nancy Nwankwo, said adequate sensitisation has been done for the importance of PVC and vote PDP.
According to her, women in Oyigbowere already prepared to celebrate the victory of SiminialayiFubara come May this year, saying they come out enmasse to vote for PDP.
“I am convinced that SimFubara will do better hence he is civil servant. He has proven his intellectual capacity faithful and truthful to replace Governor Wike,” she said.
By: Tonye Orabere
NCDC Confirms 38 Deaths Of 123 Diphtheria Cases …Says Gaps In Vaccination Coverage Fuelling Outbreak
No fewer than 38 persons have died out of the 123 diphtheria cases recorded in Nigeria so far, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), has confirmed.
The states currently facing the disease caused by serious infection of the nose and throat that is easily preventable by vaccine, are Kano, Lagos, Yobe and Osun, respectively.
The nation’s disease control and prevention agency, which disclosed this at a ministerial press briefing, organised by the Federal Ministry of Health, said more cases of the disease were being expected in days ahead, as it spreads to other places.
Speaking through its Director of Special Duties, Dr Priscilla Ibekwe, NCDC said: “As of January 22, NCDC have 123 confirmed cases and 38 deaths. 100 cases are from Kano, with 32 deaths. In Lagos there are five cases with three deaths. In Yobe, there 17 confirmed cases and three deaths, and Osun has recorded one case with no death”.
According to Ibekwe, besides clinically suspected cases, there have been laboratory-confirmed cases.
Ibekwe said the agency was working with state ministries of health and partners to enhance surveillance and response to the outbreak.
She said,”Given the sub-optimal coverage for the third dose of the diphtheria containing pentavalent vaccine (54percent – 2021 MICS & NICS) in the country, we expect more cases from more states.
“The centre has collaborated with the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) to organize a 5-day workshop on enhancing laboratory diagnosis of diphtheria in Nigeria for laboratory scientists working in NCDC’s National Reference Laboratories and its lab network (this was planned before cases were reported as part of preparedness), and;
“Written to all states HCHs to institute immediate and necessary public health measures for timely detection and response to diphtheria at state level”.
Speaking on measures being put in place to prevent the disease from spreading further, Ibekwe said NCDC has published a public health advisory, accessible on its website, which educates Nigerians on risk factors and offers advice.
She said:”Parents ensuring that their children are fully vaccinated against diphtheria with 3 doses of the pentavalent vaccine. Healthcare workers should maintain a high index of suspicion for diphtheria”.
She also spoke on how to better understand and contain the prevailing global outbreaks of SARS-CoV-2 COVID-19 variants.
She said:”The sub-lineages i.e., XBB.1.5 partly responsible for the current increase in COVID-19 cases in the US and elsewhere countries have not yet been detected in the country.
“However, this variant has not been associated with increased severity of illness and now appears to be levelling off.
“The variants reported in China so far have been those circulating globally including in Nigeria for some time.”
However, the Nigeria Centre of Disease Control and Prevention has attributed the current outbreak of diphtheria in some parts of Nigeria to a drop in the childhood vaccination coverage in some areas of the country.
The Director-General of the Agency, Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, who spoke about the development on a television programme, said that there were 34 deaths recorded over the weekend from the outbreak which hit four states.
He said due to the effectiveness of the childhood vaccination programme, most people have forgotten what it looks like.
He said, “Diphtheria, a vaccine preventable disease that used to be common decades ago is on the increase in some states in Nigeria. The fact that there is a resurgence suggests that there is significant reduction in vaccination coverage among pockets of the population and this reduced pockets of immunity has given rise to the cases we have seen.
“It is not a matter of diphtheria spreading from state to state, the bacteria that causes the disease is present everywhere and it spreads, and any state in which you find the disease now is likely to be associated with suboptimal vaccination rates, either in general or in particular in pockets of population. Failure of childhood vaccination in the failed states causing the diphtheria outbreaks.
“Kano has highest number of cases followed by Yobe, by weekend, there were 34 deaths in total.”
He warned that although diphtheria was highly preventable and treatable, fatality can increase without antibiotics and appropriate conditions, including the diphtheria antitoxin. He assured that with early detection and prompt treatment, the fatal outcomes are usually low.
Adetifa stressed that the really severe cases require the diphtheria antitoxin, even as he assured that the NCDC had distributed vials of the antitoxin since December for use in Lagos and Kano states, and was planning to extend availability to every state where the disease cases are found.
“It is important that patients should be recognised early, and laboratory confirmation carried out so that treatment can commence immediately.”
Adetifa said there were arrangements for trainings of personnel for laboratory diagnosis of the toxin including testing for most of the clinical effects.
“We are in a good state to help, but patients need to be recognised early and diagnosis made quickly and they are placed on the right treatment.
“We are using the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency, NPHCDA data to predict high risk states, there is connection with low socioeconomic situation, and we need to look out for healthcare workers who can be given courses of antibiotics.
Long-Hour Fasting, Danger To Kidney, NAFDAC Warns
The Director General of the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. MojisolaAdeyeye, has advised Nigerians against subjecting themselves to long-hour fasting, saying it was risky to their kidneys.
Adeyeye, who attributed the high rate of kidney problems in Nigeria to prolonged fasting by some religious adherents, insisted that those subjecting themselves to prolonged fasting on religious grounds must moderate the act.
She spoke in Abuja, yesterday, while briefing the media on the breakthrough by her agency in tracking high consignments of Tramadol and other pharmaceuticals to the Republic of Benin.
On the high rate of kidney problems in the country, she said: “Kidney failure, we are a very religious country- Muslims and Christians fast a lot and it is part of the kidney problem.
“Your body has to have homeomistatic balance, meaning that the water level in your body must be enough to make your organs to function.
“Some people will fast for 10 or 20 days and drink only little water, the kidney is being punished. Now, if you put chemicals in it, it triples in exponential manner, it damages the kidney because the kidney doesn’t have water to dilute and filter.”
Adeyeye, who tasked Nigerians to fast but with common sense, added: “I fast but with common sense. We have to fast with common sense; otherwise we will pay with our kidneys.”
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