The power tussle between former Senator representing Rivers South-East Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Senator Magnus Abe and Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaech may be taking a new turn as both gladiators are again flexing muscles over the choice of a flag bearer of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the Rivers State’s gubernatorial election 2023.
Abe has reportedly declared that Amaechi, who is currently a serving Minister in the Buhari-led administration does not have the powers to decide who becomes governor of the state, adding that the ticket of the party will not be zoned to any part of the state without due consultation.
He said this much while speaking to party leaders in Port Harcourt where he said no part of the state could produce a governor without the collaboration of other zones in the state.
In his words:
When you want to zone, there must be a process, there must be consultations. The people that are being zoned in must understand why they are being zoned in, and the people who are being zoned out must understand why they are being zoned out.
If you just stand, carry a microphone and begin to zone to ‘unzone’, and ‘unzone’ to zone, everybody knows what you are doing, and I want to stand here and say that it will not work.
If that was an attempt to set the riverine people against the rest of the state, I want to stand here to say that the riverine people I know are smarter than those who are trying to use them. It is a poisoned chalice. It is a Greek gift. It will get you nothing, because it is not well-intended, and it is not well-intentioned.
Abe berated a perceived attempt by Ameachi to single handedly handpick a candidate to bear the party’s flag in the forthcoming guber elections in the state, adding that the Minister who is a founding member of the APC in rivers state does not have such powers to solely select a governor.
According to him:
No one individual has that power. And definitely, the former governor of Rivers State, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi does not have that power as far as Rivers State is concerned.
We have to be very factual and honest with one another. Without honesty, we cannot make progress. Without respect for one another we cannot make progress.
How can anybody get up, in a party where we are to do registration, we have not even concluded the registration, we have not chosen one ward chairman, we have not chosen one ward ex-officio, we have not chosen a local government chairman.
We have not elected a chairman of the party in the state, and even before we do any of that, somebody has come out to zone governorship of the party. Is that a sensible political action? Will it help the APC to win in Rivers State? It is an action that is doomed to lead to another round of failure, and we should not allow it.
The speculative bad blood between Abe and Ameachi have been on for some time now, although Abe had recently come out to debunk rumors of a feud between him and the former governor, saying while they may have different political interests in the same party, that did not translate to being being enemies.