(By Iheanyi Ezinwo)-Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has been commended for behaving like a worthy and true son of Rivers State. The commendation was made by the Coalition of Rivers Patriots, during the church service to mark Dr. Peter Odili’s 70th birthday anniversary at Our Lady of Holy Rosary Chaplaincy, Catholic Institute of West Africa, in Port Harcourt, on Wednesday.
Speaking to newsmen after the church service, the Coalition of Rivers Patriots, through its Publicity Secretary, Barr. Thompson Barilede, described the organization of the birthday for Dr. Odili, who ruled Rivers state for eight years, as a major milestone in Governor Nyesom Wike’s disposition as a patriotic and committed young political leader, whose respect and appreciation of those who had led the state in the past, is legendary.
Barr. Barilede said: “You recall that, it is not in the habit of our young leaders to honour those who were there before them. This is why, it is commendable to witness what we are seeing today. It is also a statement of fact that Governor Wike was not the only politician that the former governor, Dr. Peter Odili mentored. He was only a local government chairman when Sir. Odili was at the helm of affairs in Rivers State, but look at what he is doing today: honouring a man who, in the opinion of the Support Popular View Group, deserves all the accolades attached to this ceremony.
“ If you permit me, I make bold to ask the question, where are those before Governor Wike? I read an extract from Governor Odili’s book where he lamented the degree of betrayal and disappointment from persons he assisted at different times in different ways. Governor Wike has shown to the world that there are still persons with conscience and character, by celebrating the legendary elder statesman; a medical doctor of repute and outstanding politician, Sir. Dr. Peter Odili. Our prayer is that God should continue to broaden the horizon of Governor Wike, provide for him to continue to demonstrate the honesty and kindness in him”, he stated.
The Coalition of Rivers Patriots, according to Barr. Thompsom Barilede, joins all well meaning Rivers people and Nigerians, who have continued to appreciate the attitude of Governor Wike in remembering the man he described as his mentor.
“We want to thank Governor Ezenwo Nyesom Wike for the initiative and pray that God should replenish and grant him long life so that those after him will also honour him as he has honoured Odili today. You can see the number of persons who have passed through Dr. Peter Odili in his political career and practice of medicine. Most people had expected that somebody like Rt. Hon. Chubuike Amaechi and his wife, who Dr. Odili brought up and sponsored their wedding like we were told, should have been here to honour a man who gave them life when they needed it.
“I think Amaechi and his family, not being here today to honour Dr. Odili who they had acknowledged in the past as their father, they had missed a point. Governor Wike would have behaved otherwise, as he would have surprised his ‘supposed enemy’ with his presence, at least at the church service in a Catholic denomination”, the publicity secretary of Coalition of Rivers Patriots emphasized.