(By Iheanyi Ezinwo) – Wife of President Muhammadu Buhari, Aisha Buhari has described Senator Magnus Abe, senator representing Rivers South East senatorial district in the National Assembly as not only a family friend but also a brother,
The first lady of Nigeria was speaking at a reception in Port Harcourt on Saturday after a thanksgiving service by Senator Magnus Abe and other elected representatives of the All Progressives Congress who scaled through the difficult re-run elections in Rivers State last year, thereby recovering some lost grounds from the Peoples Democratic Party.
Hajia Aisha Buhari, who was represented by a team of national women leaders of the All progressives Congress from the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria spoke through Barr. Mary Ekpena- Eta, Director General of Centre for Women Development, said that it was a great pleasure to celebrate the well deserved electoral victory of Senator Abe with other well meaning Nigerians.
Describing Senator Abe as a worthy ambassador who is committed to the cause of the APC, Nigeria’s First Lady stressed that the Ogoni born politician is close to the family, and has to his credit a record of always discharging his duties creditably and demonstrating maturity and exemplary leadership.
While thanking Rivers people for their confidence in the senator as evidenced in the unprecedented crowd at the event, President Buhari’s wife urged Rivers people to continue to support Senator Magnus Abe so that he can continue to contribute his own quota to the development of the state.
Also speaking at the occasion, Davies Ikanya, Chairman of APC in Rivers State said the party was giving God glory because, but for him the PDP would have taken all the elective positions in the state.
He said the APC was celebrating because, God made it possible for them to recover two seats at the senate, three at the House of Representatives and five at the Rivers State House of Assembly.
Noting that giving glory to God was the key to future electoral victories, Chief Ikanya said the APC in Rivers State is one family; that people are allowed to aspire to any political office, and that when the time for selection comes, that the process will be free and fair.
He therefore advised party faithful not to fight one another at a time when the green light is yet to be given for the commencement of campaigns.
Also speaking at the occasion, the Rivers State governor, Chief Ezenwo Nyesom Wike, whose arrival electrified the Polo Club venue of the reception said only God gives power, stressing that Abe was able to return to the National Assembly in spite of his opposition because God wanted it so.
Governor Wike, who acknowledged that it was by the grace of God that Abe was able to win the case in court and return to the senate after the re-run, challenged the senator to ensure that the interest of the state is paramount in all his actions at the National Assembly.
Mr. Project, as Governor Wike is also known said that, when the time for wrestling in politics comes, that they will do so but that for now, it is time to provide good governance in the state.
In his own remarks, President of Nigerian Senate, Senator Abubakar Bukola Saraki, who led scores of senators to the event described Senator Abe as along standing friend who is a founding member of the APC , and that his significant contributions to the development of the party is well known at the national level.
Senator Saraki further explained that the members of the senate are solidly in support of Abe, who he said is going somewhere as was severally echoed earlier in the church by the clergy and other speakers, even as he added that power comes from God.
Speaking on behalf of his colleagues, Hon. Chidi Wihioka, representing Ikwerre/ Emohua in the House of Representatives said APC is not a private property of any individual and that, at the appropriate time, all stakeholders will sit down and decide who gets what, and who goes where.
In his own remarks, Senator Heneken Lokpobiri, Minister of State for Agriculturesaid the senator is a friend to most of the ministers and that he has their support.
Responding , Senator Magnus Abe thanked all for coming, assuring that God will, in His own time honour them in return. He said, as Rivers people, the future of Rivers state remain their destiny, stressing that only the Rivers people will decide their future.
He disclosed that Rt. Hon. Rotimi Amaechi , Nigeria’s Minister of Transportation, Senator Olaka Wogu, his opponent in the election and Governor Wike were all invited but that it was only Wike who chose to honour his invitation.
He harped on the need for other political gladiators in the party to take thing s easy and not heat up the system, thereby creating problems for the party.
While thanking all those who helped them during the elections, Senator Abe urged Governor Wike to carry every body along, even as he observed that it is only when they work together that the benefit of democracy can spread across the state.
Dignitaries who graced the occasion that was chaired by Timipre Sylva, former governor of Bayelsa State included Senate President Bukola Saraki, scores of senators and national officers of the All Progressives Congress, representative of the Secretary to Government of Federation, and leaders of the state. Governor Rochas Okorocha and others left after the church service.