Written by Bisi Olaniyi
•Rivers gov: they’re busy sacking people and making appointments that should be left to incoming govt
•Amaechi, APC leaders should be ignored, says Rivers PDP
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday dismissed as diversionary and unnecessary, claims by the All Progressives Congress (APC) that the Presidency and the PDP were not cooperating in the transition process.
The National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, said that the meetings of the transition and inauguration committees of both parties have been going on fruitfully and wondered where the false alarm was coming from.
But the APC National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, who is a member of his party’s transtition committee, insisted that no formal meeting between the panels has taken place.
Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State joined the fray yesterday as he took a swipe at President Goodluck Jonathan for allegedly spending valuable part of his last days in office sacking people and making appointments that ought to be left to the incoming administration to handle.
Chief Metuh, in a statement in Abuja branded the APC’s allegation as an unfortunate display of arrogance and falsehood ostensibly aimed at heating up the system and creating room to cover for its inadequacies, thereby inventing excuses for any failure in office.
He said: “We can confirm that the APC Transition Committee led by Mallam Ahmed Joda has met at least twice with the Presidency team led by Vice President Namadi Sambo, while the Timipre Sylva-led APC Inauguration Committee has been meeting almost on a daily basis with the PDP team led by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Senator Anyim Pius Anyim. It is, therefore, most uncharitable for the APC to attempt to mislead the people by claiming that the PDP-led Presidency was not cooperating in the process.
“Although the ruling party suffered some electoral set back, Nigerians are witness to the fact that the PDP has remained humble in defeat, while focusing on rebuilding and reinventing itself. Such should not in any way warrant the unnecessary attacks, vituperations and insults from the APC.
“As we look up from the lowest level we have ever fallen, we are fully determined to start the process of ascending back to an acceptable level in earnest. The APC must, therefore, learn to be decent and cease to be arrogant as that would amount to taking the goodwill of the people for granted.
“What should be of more concern to an incoming government like APC is the negative signals and the rising worries by Nigerians over its flip-flops and apparent nervousness of its President-elect who has started reneging on his campaign promises.”
But Alhaji Mohammed stood by his position that “as of today (yesterday), there has been no meeting between members of Jonathan’s Transition Committee and the President-elect’s,” even while admitting that the Chairman of the President-elect’s committee, Alhaji Ahmed Joda “in the company of two or three members of our committee has met with the Vice President and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation.”
He added: “However, there are 19 members of the President-elect’s committee of which I am privileged to be one and as of today, we have had no formal meeting with Jonathan’s team.
“We don’t even know who the members are. Or is Jonathan’ Transition Committee made up of only the Vice President and SGF?
“If the VP and SGF have met with four members of a 19-man team, does that constitute a meeting with the President-elect’s Transition-committee.
“As a matter of fact, we have formally requested in writing for a meeting with the Jonathan’s Transition Committee and have received no reply.”
He said Metuh failed to controvert the APC claim that the Federal Government had refused to “give us one page of handing over notes.
“They told our Chairman, Alhaji Ahmed Joda, in one of their informal meetings that we should not expect any handling over documents before the 14th of May 2015.”
He challenged Metuh and the Presidency to deny this, saying: “Is this Metuh and the Presidency’s understanding of a smooth transition?”
In Port Harcourt, Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State took a swipe at President Goodluck Jonathan for spending valuable part of his last days in office sacking people and making appointments that should be left to the incoming administration to handle.
The governor described the development as provocative.
But he said the All Progressives Congress (APC) “has refused to dance to PDP’s drumbeats, choosing to show maturity.”
Governor Amaechi was reacting to the allegation by the President’s party, PDP, that he had refused to co-operate with Mr. Nyesom Wike, winner of the last governorship election in the state, ahead of the May 29 handing over.
Information Commissioner Ibim Semenitari who spoke for the governor said that the PDP and not the APC was guilty of trying to frustrate its successor in power.
Amaechi said he and his commissioners are ready with their hand-over notes, preparatory to the terminal date of his administration on May 29.
He wondered what he would be doing in office after the expiration of his tenure.
His words: “We are ready for handover, unlike the PDP at the centre that is busy making new appointments and sacking people.
“They have refused to brief the Muhammadu Buhari Transition Team, and the APC is not screaming blue murder. Rather, the APC at the centre is meeting, planning and preparing for government.”
He denied that he has not been co-operating with Wike,saying: “They stole the outcomes of the April 11 elections and gave no hoot. They declared their candidates winners with the criminal connivance of the INEC and cared less about local, national and international opinions that what took place in Rivers State on April 11 was everything, but an election.
“The more the APC leaders had pushed for electoral materials, which are statutory demands of an electoral litigation, the farther PDP and INEC had kept them, and seemingly, they have had their way.
“So, they have all going for them. They have nothing to worry about. If and when Mr. Ezebuwon Nyesom Wike will be sworn in, the issue of handover notes and other statutory briefings should not be any worry to him. After all, PDP in Rivers State has constituted Inauguration and Transition Committees.
“Already, Wike has, as part of his transition team, the Rivers State Deputy Governor, Engr. Tele Renner Ikuru, who is the Vice-Chairman of the Rivers State Executive Council and who is abreast of all projects and programmes of the current administration, having chaired many sensitive state government committees and state cabinet meetings.”
Semenitari admonished PDP leaders in the state to learn from APC members who, according to him, have refused to be provoked by the PDP.
She said: “Governor Amaechi has not made any new appointment, as he knows he is leaving office on May 29, unlike what PDP is doing at the centre. They are busy sacking and making appointments, functions that should be entirely left for the incoming administration.
“Provocative as it is, APC has rather concerned itself with continued preparations to give Nigerians good governance. APC has refused to dance to PDP’s evil drumbeats, choosing to show maturity.
“Let PDP in Rivers State leave Governor Amaechi alone. He is a busy man and did not contest any election. Governor Amaechi is known for committing his all into any worthy assignment or duty he is called to do.”
The Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) of INEC in Rivers, Dame Gesila Khan denied that the commission helped PDP rig the election as claimed by Amaechi while the Publicity Secretary of the PDP in the state , Samuel Nwanosike, said Amaechi should be ignored.
Khan and Nwanosike maintained that elections took place in Rivers state on March 28 and April 11, insisting that the polls were free, fair, transparent and credible, with the PDP winning overwhelmingly, in view of the popularity and wide acceptability of the party’s candidates.
The Rivers REC of INEC stated that all the requested electoral materials were being made available to the leaders and lawyers of all the political
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