APC Faults Wike’s Attack On FG Over Soot.
The Rivers All Progressives Congress (APC) has slammed Governor Nyesom Wike‘s claims that the federal government had done little to ease the state’s soot problem.
Senibo Chris Finebone, the party’s State Publicity Secretary, said it was irresponsible for the Governor to blame the Federal Government of inactivity when he had not taken any real steps that required collaboration.
Finebone accused the Governor of seeking to profit politically from his fight against soot, claiming that such motivation would stymie the state’s attempts to solve the problem.
He claimed it was irresponsible for Wike to begin blaming the environmental crisis on everyone but himself given the state’s inactivity for many years.
He did, however, accept that Wike’s charges against security personnel were credible and that the authorities should look into them.
He said: “Whereas the accusation against some security personnel may have some substance worthy of investigation, it is rather most unintelligent for the governor who heads a subnational government to blame the federal government for inaction on the deadly soot in Rivers State when the State government has not initiated any concrete action requiring synergy with the federal government.
“Indeed, government-to-government business is not conducted based on off-the-cuff comments of a governor at functions or events. Can the Rivers State Government provide proof of Save Our Souls (SOS) memos initiated by it and addressed to the FG through Federal Ministry of Environment calling for the central government’s intervention on the matter? That is how government-to-government business is conducted.
“Very significant is that, after all said and done, the fact that a State under the ravaging whirlwind of soot does not have a sitting Cabinet Commissioner for Environment smells real bad and is self-indicting.
“It means that the very dangerous health risk will not be routinely brought by official memo to be discussed at the State Executive Council meetings except if the governor remembers to table it. Apparently, this has been the sad situation so far.
“Truth is that the governor never considered the soot descending on Port Harcourt and environs important enough for 6 years until now. All the APC is saying is that the governor should be honest enough to take responsibility for doing nothing for over six years even as citizens cried for help.
“The Governor should not merely go after grasshoppers while leaving the elephants to continue with their alternative economy that inflicts havoc on the lives of residents of the State. It should not be seen as a ready opportunity to rope in innocent political opponents particularly now that the local government chairmen are major drivers of the fight.
“APC will always support any genuine and honest steps taken by all levels of government be it the federal, state and local to stem this very horrendous soot ravaging our people and residents of Rivers State especially Port Harcourt. Our only concern is that any attempt to use it for political witch-hunt of opponents will backfire and defeat the purpose”.