Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, on Saturday, September 26, condemned Rotimi Amaechi, the Minister of Transportation under the Muhammadu Buhari led government over what he termed ’embarrassing remarks’ at the funeral of late former Justice of the Supreme Court, Adolphus Karibi-Whyte.
Naija News understands that the two politicians on Saturday, engaged in a verbal war during the burial of the late former Supreme Court judge which was held in the Abonnema, Akuku-Toru Local Government Area of the state.
The exchange of words started after Amaechi while speaking at the event which hosted respected citizens lamented over what he termed ‘the rising insecurity and political intimidation’ in Rivers state.
According to him, the state has been returned to the era of Ateke Tom, a former militant leader, who is now the traditional head of Okochiri town in Okrika LGA of the state. He said, “You have lost your voice. The sage (the late justice) has gone under and nobody is speaking. When I was governor, I gave people voices, but they have blocked those voices.”
Amaechi vowed to start speaking up over the development in the state as from next year in case nobody wants to give his voice. He said, “Everyone is scared. We are going back to when Ateke held sway. We are going back to the period where we run away from our people. We are back to a period when nobody could speak. But from next year, I will begin to speak, if nobody wants to speak.”
He continued, “We are all here because we need to bury a man God has blessed. I have stopped travelling because of bad weather, but I told myself I must be here because of Justice Whyte.
“If you knew Justice (Karibi-Whyte) very well, you will know I was close to him. I was one of the few people he mentored,” Amaechi stated.
Reacting back to Amaechi’s claim, Wike who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Chief Emeka Woke, said the minister had lost touch with developments in the state, adding that since the launching of Operation Sting by his administration, the security situation had improved greatly.
He said, “It is unfortunate for Amaechi to come to Kalabari land and accuse former President Goodluck Jonathan of not developing the area six years after he had left office.
“I wonder why the former governor will choose to make such embarrassing remarks at the funeral of late Justice Karibi-Whyte, a man he (Amaechi) claimed to be his mentor.”
The governor, however, described the late Karibi-Whyte as an epitome of unshakable integrity, civility and dignity, but noted that comments credited to Amaechi were embarrassing.
Meanwhile, a few months ago, the former Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi disclosed that he had no initial plan to join politics but unemployment forced him into it.