The Rivers State Governor, Chibuike Amaechi, has said the reasons adduced by his deputy, Tele Ikuru, for resigning from the All Progressives Congress, APC, were shocking to him.
He stated this via a statement by his Commissioner for Information and Communication, Ibim Semenitari, on Sunday.
Mr. Ikuru resigned from the APC and immediately canvassed support for the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the state, Nyesom Wike. He followed Mr. Amaechi to the APC after the latter and four other governors dumped the PDP for the opposition party in 2013.
Mr. Ikuru, who was deputy governor to Mr. Amaechi’s predecessor, Celestine Omehia, retained his position after Mr. Amaechi assumed office in October 2007 following Mr. Omehia’s sack by the Court of Appeal.
Ms. Semenitari’s statement said the governor received the news of Mr. Ikuru’s resignation from the APC on Sunday evening. It stated that the news remained unofficial as the deputy governor was yet to notify the governor of his move. It, however, said the governor wished him the best in his future political endeavours.
“He however wishes to note that the reasons adduced by Engineer Ikuru are shocking as Deputy Governor lkuru has consistently been the one driving political activities in his local government area of Andoni. He has also been the second in command driving politics and governance in Rivers State,” the statement said.
It also said the governor had hoped that “the numerous rumours of Engineer Ikuru’s double-faced membership of the APC and open romance with the PDP were not true, he however appreciates the fact that every individual has a right to pursue his political dreams, as he deems most appropriate.”
The statement further stated that it was regrettable that Mr. Ikuru chose the path of bare faced lies and name calling rather than the path of simply retracing his steps to where he has always been.
“On a personal note, Governor Amaechi has accorded Engineer Ikuru all the privileges and respect due the office of the Deputy Governor and has treated him with love as a friend and brother,” it stated.
In an address entitled “A Call on the Conscience of The People of Rivers State,” in which he announced his resignation from APC earlier on Sunday, Mr. Ikuru said “Ever since, as the true nature and motives of APC are unveiled, I have continued to twist and turn in extreme mental and emotional agony.
“The more I struggle to belong, the more the Rivers man in me rejects the APC.
“After carefully studying, interacting and analyzing the leadership of the party, I have come to the sad conclusion that the APC is a party of rebels, insurgents and anarchists, clothed in robes of pretense and deceit. APC is a party founded on deception and it thrives on unholy propaganda and falsehood.”
The deputy governor said he would not want to be among the Niger Delta people who will chase out their kinsman, President Goodluck Jonathan, from the position.
Mr. Jonathan, from neighbouring Bayelsa State, is the presidential candidate of the PDP in the March 28 election.
Mr. Ikuru said, “I wash my hands off this treachery and in the light of the above, I wish to urge all my supporters, the good people of Rivers State to join hands with other well-meaning Nigerians to massively vote for President Goodluck Jonathan and the Transformation Agenda that has brought so much relief and succour to the greatest number of Nigerians.
“I also urge all Rivers People to vote for Nyesom Wike (CON), who has shown by his antecedents, track records and boundless capabilities that he will deliver good governance to the People of Rivers State,” the Deputy Governor said in his defection speech.