The bitter altercations between the Minister of Transportation, Mr Chubuike Amaechi and his successor, Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State further degenerated on Tuesday with both sides dragging their families into the muddy political arena.
In what is being considered by many as taking their political feud to a ridiculous extreme, Wike and Amaechi are now shooting deadly missiles at their spouses with allegations and counter threats being the order of the day.
Responding to Governor Wike’s claims that each commissioner and local government chairman in Rivers State were forced to part with N3 million and N2 million monthly for the former governor’s wife, Judith, the Minister says he is ready to call out and rubbish Wike’s wife if the unwarranted attack on Mrs Amaechi continues.
Speaking with reporters after inspecting the Kaduna Inland Dry Port on Tuesday, the visibly angry Minister, who described his successor as a thug that could hardly speak good English, said, “By accident of Goodluck Jonathan, I don’t want to attribute it to God, but by the accident of Jonathan, the man takes office and talks rubbish. My wife and family, including my younger brothers and sisters, no one had access to government when I was governor.”
“Even as minister, nobody will have such because it is not a family business. It is government business. But the problem with Nyesom Wike, and I want you to state this, if he doesn’t shut up his mouth and do his work I will bring his wife to the focus. You see I’ve been very matured not to talk about his wife.
“But if Wike does not close his mouth and not talk about my wife anymore, I will bring out his wife. My wife will never do such, we don’t do family business. I care about transparency. My wife is a trader. She buys and sells and Wike knows that.”
Reacting to allegations that he squandered Rivers State’s N30 billion, the Transport Minister said: “And you believe that? The man who says he has about $50m in Lagos and could not prove it, is the same man you believe. The man who said I didn’t pay salaries until I left office and now he is saying no, it is pensioners that I didn’t pay. Do you believe such a man?
“Do you think such a man is well? You believe Nyesom Wike is well? First, he doesn’t know how to speak English, he is poorly dressed, he is a thug, and you bring me to focus with that kind of a man?”
On Rivers State government’s decision to approach the court on some of the allegations levelled against him during his tenure as governor, Mr Amaechi insisted that the panel set up by Governor Wike’s administration failed to give his legal team fair hearing during its sitting.
“Which court, okay let him go to court. He has no facts and he maligns people’s character. The process is that, you set up a tribunal, but we’ve questioned the tribunal, we were not given fair hearing.
Making inference that the matter was not properly handled, the Minister stated thus: “Again, how do you know how the court came to its decision? We were not even informed. There is a panel of justices in Rivers State, which is the Court of Appeal. But by the time we knew it, they took away that matter from them and gave it to a panel that came from Adamawa.”