The festering dispute between Rivers State governor, Rotimi Amaechi and the Minister for Niger Delta, Elder Godsday Orubebe has turned into an open confrontation following Amaechi’s response to Orubebe’s accusation that the governor was not showing enough respect to President Goodluck Jonathan.
Amaechi, in a statement signed by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Dave Iyofor, said it was worrisome that since Orubebe became minister, he has been unable to complete a single road project in the region, causing his position to become a burden in the region.
He also added that he had tremendous respect for the office and person of President Goodluck Jonathan, and accused Orubebe of being the one disrespecting the president by dragging his name into his inability to deliver on the East-West Road.
The statement also said: “The Minister conveniently forgets that the same Amaechi he now disparages and accuses of not respecting Mr. President, led Rivers’ people to overwhelmingly vote for and gave President Jonathan the highest votes by any state in the country at the last Presidential elections. What respect, regard and show of love is bigger than that?
‘’His reckless attacks on the person of Governor Amaechi is an obvious attempt to divert attention from his abysmal failure to deliver on the East- West road. This callous attempt to drag the President’s name into it is what is most disrespectful and irresponsible. I challenge the Minister to show the world; projects he started and completed in the Niger-Delta as Minister of Niger-Delta affairs. I challenge him to show the world one project he started and completed in Rivers State with the huge resources allocated to his ministry. Or is Rivers State not part of the Niger-Delta…?
’’In the same vein, I challenge him to come to Rivers State at anytime of his choice and since he could not see Governor Amaechi’s monumental developmental strides and projects in the state, I will be most delighted to show him the kilometres upon kilometres of brand new roads and bridges, the world-class new hospitals and health centres scattered all over the state; the exquisite primary and secondary schools that have become the models for many, the robust urban renewal programme, and many more developmental projects of the Amaechi administration. I will advise him to make sure he brings the press along as well; so the media will be quick to remind him that they saw the projects with him.”
The governor then advised him to face the task of completing at least, one road, as using attacks on the governor as a diversionary attempt would not achieve the completion of a road Niger-Deltans have been waiting for.