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Rivers 2019: Wike speaks on possible APC governorship candidate, Tonye Cole



The Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, has thrown a challenge to the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state, as Nigeria prepares for the 2019 general elections.

Mr Wike challenged the APC leaders in Rivers to mention projects executed in the state by the APC-led federal government before they field a candidate to challenge him in the forthcoming governorship election.

The governor recently declared his ambition to seek a second term in office under the platform of his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).

There are speculations that the APC leaders in Rivers have settled for a Nigerian billionaire businessman, Tonye Cole, as the party candidate for the 2019 governorship election in the state.

Mr Cole recently resigned from the board of directors of his company, Sahara Group of Companies, in order to join “active politics”.

“For the APC to even think of bringing out anybody to stand election against me in this state, to challenge whether I have done something or not, then you should know that something is wrong somewhere,” Mr Wike said in Port Harcourt, on Tuesday, in an interview.

“What has the federal government done for this state? Is it in terms of electric power, port, or roads?

“All their meetings, all their gatherings, is that they must take over Rivers State, by crook or whatever means, they want to use soldiers, police, and the SSS. The cry by the international community does not matter to them, they don’t care,” the governor said.

Mr Wike said Mr Cole, if he wins the APC governorship ticket, won’t be a threat in any way to his re-election.

“Is it all about money?” he said. “Yes, I know money is important, but from what I have read, Senator Magnus Abe said he never knew the man was a member of his party.”

The governor continued: “Look, let me tell you, in 2015, Tonye Cole is the man the former governor wanted to bring out for the governorship election. But he couldn’t bring him out because Jonathan was running for president, and the man felt he couldn’t have run against an Ijaw man.

“The man he is presenting today isn’t a new thing, except for those who don’t understand the politics of the state and what has been going on. We know and so we are not surprised.

“APC has a right to choose whoever they want to choose to fly their flag. I don’t have a problem with that. We have prepared and we have been waiting for them to choose whoever they want to choose. What we have done will speak for us.

“I know the young man, there is no need to talk about him since he has not won the primary yet.”

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