The Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, says he is the only presidential aspirant who has presided over an insecure state and tackled insecurity successfully as governor.
Amaechi said of all the presidential aspirants, he was the most qualified because of the experiences he had garnered over almost three decades in politics.
He expressed confidence that 99 percent of delegates from Rivers State would vote for him at the All Progressives Congress presidential primary.
Amaechi stated this on Friday in Port Harcourt while addressing party faithful during a consultation tour of Rivers State, pointing out that he remained a loyal party member and would support anyone who emerged victorious at the APC primary should the party fail to pick him.
The minister said, “Ninety-nine per cent of Rivers delegates will vote for me at the primary. Those who are qualified to vote as Rivers delegates will vote for me. It is not about voting for me because I am your son, but voting for me because what is right is right, and what is wrong is wrong.
“And because of the experience I am bringing to the table. Of all the aspirants, I am the youngest and the most experienced. I was a speaker for eight years, governor for eight years and I have done seven years as the minister of transport.
“I am the only aspirant on the stage that has governed a state where there was insecurity. When I came, they kidnapped Prof. Nimi Briggs (former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Port Harcourt); they kidnapped Mrs. Lulu-Briggs (wife of the late oil mogul, O. B. Lulu-Briggs).
“Those were the baptisms of fire that I faced in the first few weeks after I came into office. After that came the story of how they were kidnapping two-month-old babies. But we faced those challenges together and we overcame those challenges to free Rivers State. I don’t know what the situation is now. I don’t live here. I live in Abuja.”
The APC presidential hopeful disclosed that about 70 percent of politicians in the state passed through him, hence he could decipher who had the capacity to lead the state, and who would not be loyal.
Amaechi stated, “Those of you who are crying now in Rivers State, I warned all of you but you didn’t listen. 60 to 70 percent of Rivers State politicians passed through me, so I know the character of everybody. I know who is capable of being a governor and who has no capacity.
“I know what loyalty is, and I am a very loyal person. Those who are not loyal, I wish them well. I am loyal to the President and I am loyal to the party. If the party says it’s me, thank God. But if the party says it’s not me, whoever the party chooses, I will support.
“If the President or the party chooses someone else, I’ll support the person; and if they choose me, I’ll be glad and come back here to worship God.”
In his speech, the Rivers State Chairman of the APC, Mr Emeka Bekee, expressed optimism that he would be the chairman to produce the next President of Nigeria and a governor in the state.
“Sir, go home and sleep. Rivers delegates will vote for you because all of us from Rivers State have benefited from you and this is the time to pay you back,” Bekee added.
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