‘Our contest was as intense and jugular as typical political enemies. Ultimately, I won and prevailed over him,” River State Governor Nyesom Wike said on Saturday as he narrated his political battle with his predecessor and current Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi.
Wike, who served as the Chief of Staff when Amaechi was the governor of Rivers State, said the minister did everything to truncate his political career, but failed.
The Rivers State governor spoke in a statement when he and former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar, were conferred with honorary doctorate degrees by PAMO University of Medical Sciences, PUMS, in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Wike said, “Midway into his first tenure, I got the signal early enough that I have become a foe and pencilled down to be politically brought down, extinguished, or terminated.”
Amaechi, as governor of Rivers had also forwarded the name of Wike to be appointed as a minister under former President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration.
But Wike claimed Amaechi did that reluctantly, saying that he was never his first or preferred choice.
Wike said, “He (Amaechi), therefore, worked twice as hard behind the scene to truncate my confirmation by the Nigerian Senate but failed because God said otherwise.
“Moving forward and when he noticed my ambition to succeed him as the governor of Rivers State, he immediately drew the battle line and vowed that I could only succeed him over his dead body.
“But he acted the coward by refusing to commit the suicide he had promised if I became the governor of Rivers State. Thank God he chickened out and did not die.”