Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has said that the leaders and people of Niger Delta will always defend the unity of Nigeria because, to them, the country remaining one indivisible entity is ‘non-negotiable.’
Governor Wike made this comment in Sokoto when he paid a visit to the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Sa’ad Abubakar (III) at his palace.
He said the interest of Nigerians and Africans will be better served with Nigeria remaining one ‘strong and united nation.’
“Let me, first of all, sincerely thank you, our father the Sultan, for what you are doing for this country, working tirelessly to ring peace and to bring unity to the people. So, for all of us, this is what is meant by one Nigeria.
“We cannot run away from this country. The unity of this country is very, very paramount. The unity of this country is non-negotiable. I am from the Niger Delta, from Rivers State to be specific, so I cannot see us in a divided country. No way. We stand for the unity of this country,” Wike declared.
According to the Governor of the oil-rich State, his administration has committed a lot of time, resources and energy to protect national assets, especially the ones in Rivers state.
“In Rivers, you hardly find (cases of) pipeline vandalisation. We are working at all times to protect national assets in our state. In my state, I am Governor for all the people living in the state. I am not a governor of a particular political party, but a governor for all the people of Rivers State.”
While commending the Sultan for his leadership of the Muslim community in Nigeria, Wike said he was in Sokoto to felicitate with his colleague, Governor Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, who gave out his daughter in marriage on Saturday.
He dispelled the notion that his relationship with Tambuwal had political connotation, saying they had been friends for a long time, “long before politics defined who we are now.”
“Tambuwal is my friend for a long time. If anything affects him, it affects me also. If he gives out his daughter in marriage, I have to be here to support him. If any problem happens to him, it affects me as well.”
In their remarks, both the host Governor and the Sultan implored Nigerians to live in peace with one another, and wished their countrymen and women a new year full of happiness and blessings.