The Presidency has berated Governor of Rivers State Chibuike Amaechi over his statement during the Salvation Rally by the All Progressives Congress (APC), in Abuja on Wednesday, describing it as treasonable.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Public Affairs, Dr. Doyin Okupe, who spoke to journalists yesterday, in a speech he titled “Amaechi’s open threat to democracy,” said Amaechi would have been arrested for making sunch irresponsible comments, if not for the immunity he enjoys.
“It is even more evil and certainly anti-democratic for him to threaten “civil disobedience” and the forming of a parallel government if his party loses the 2015 general elections.
“We unequivocally condemn this stance by Governor Amaechi, which borders on attaining power through threat, intimidation and subversion of popular will.
Okupe advised Amaechi and his party to give up or repackage in a way that will appeal to voters if the party feels so threatened by the PDP and is scared about its chances at the coming elections.
He however warned the Rivers State governor and other politicians who share similar views with him, that Nigeria has left the days of dictatorship, and therefore people who try to acquire power by illegal means will answer to the law.
“On Wednesday, November 19, 2014, the Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi, made a few comments about the forthcoming general elections, which bother on incitement, treason and gross rascality.
“Mr. Amaechi, who became Governor of Rivers State in 2007 consequent upon a court judgment, said at a street rally organised by the All Progressives Congress that if the 2015 elections are ‘rigged’, his party will not seek redress in court but would rather carry out what he called ‘civil disobedience’ as well as form a ‘parallel government’.
“This statement is clearly a further evidence of Governor Amaechi’s penchant for lawlessness and anarchy in his unbridled pursuit for power. It is curious and unthinkable that a man who was himself a beneficiary of the court process would disdain the very platform through which he acquired the opportunity to make his reckless and provocative statement.
“It is even more worrisome when one considers the fact that Governor Amaechi’s party, which is relatively new, came on board promising hope to Nigerians. With statements like this, it is clear that Amaechi is more of a liability to his party than asset and has the potential to bring his party to further opprobrium and disrepute.
“For someone who aspires to become the vice president of this country, his disdain for law and order is not only unfortunate but also patently dangerous and sends dark signals about the survival of our democracy.
“Discerning Nigerians know that comments like this not only do not augur well for any democracy but also portray Mr. Amaechi as a reckless, power hungry individual who lacks both the democratic temper and respect for constituted authority and institutions. For a party that has made so much noise about its intentions to offer Nigerians a new deal, we wonder how the APC can be comfortable with a loose cannon like Governor Amaechi.
“It is clear to any discerning mind that Mr. Amaechi’s indecorous outbursts and his obvious disregard and contempt for the rule of law, have defined him as unfit to hold any serious public office in this country let alone the vice presidency of Nigeria to which he aspires.
“Since Nigerians know for a fact that the Rivers State Governor has not been living in the moon but has been in this country since the commencement of our present democratic experiment, they are definitely at pains to understand why he has failed to acknowledge the successes that have attended our electoral processes since President Jonathan came on board in 2010.”
“It is a well-known fact that the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan has remained faithful to its commitment to electoral transparency in all elections conducted since the electoral reforms of 2010,” Okupe said.
He also noted that the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has lost elections in several states and electoral constituencies, and has always taken it in good faith, with the President usually being the first to congratulate winners of such contests.
“This is the hallmark of President Goodluck Jonathan’s statesmanship and an undisputable commitment to democratic norms and values.
“It is therefore preposterous, evil and mischievous for Mr Amaechi to suggest that there were plans by the Federal government to rig any elections in today’s Nigeria,” Okupe said.