The governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike has listed his arch-rival, Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, among several persons to be honoured by the state.
A list of honourees prepared by the Jubilee Anniversary Committee set up by Mr. Wike has ncluded Mr. Amaechi’s name at number 18 amongst 29 people to be awarded Grand Service Star of Rivers State who was the governor of Rivers State from 2007 to 2015 and was succeeded by Wike.. Other Prospective honourees will be honoured for their individual contributions to the development of Rivers State are the Former Nigerian leaders Goodluck Jonathan and Yakubu Gowon, alongside late activist, Ken Saro-Wiwa, who would be honoured posthumously.
According to the program pamphlet, The awards ceremony is slated to hold on May 27 in Port Harcourt, in the state capital, but it was not immediately clear if the minister would accept the honour or personally show up to receive his medal from Mr. Wike, with whom he’d been locked in bitter political contest for more than three years.
Amaechi’s spokesperson, David Iyofor, said he was not aware of his principal being identified amongst those to be honoured.
Recall that, Wike once served as Mr. Amaechi’s chief of staff during the former’s first term from 2007 to 2011, the duo soon fell out with each other shortly after Wike was appointed as Minister of State foe Education by former President Goodluck Jonathan. Wike was scheming to succeed Mr. Amaechi in office, but the then governor had a different plan. The disagreement soon snowballed into an all-out political chaos between the duo. When a friction ensued between Mr. Amaechi and former First Lady Patience Jonathan, Mr. Wike took sides with the latter.
The award comes even as Mr. Wike appears to intensify attacks against his predecessor. Within the last few weeks, the governor has levelled many allegations against the minister. Shortly after a huge stash of cash was discovered in an apartment in Ikoyi, Mr. Wike took to media to link Mr. Amaechi with the money. The claim turned out to be false after it was confirmed that the money belonged to the National Intelligence Agency.
On Monday, the governor accused Mr. Amaechi of raising a cult militia in the state, to prepare for 2019 elections. Mr. Amaechi denied the allegation.