Rotimi Amaechi ‘I was more popular than any PDP governor,’ Minister says

Amaechi made the comment after his arrival in Port Harcourt ahead of the December 10 rerun elections.

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Former Rivers State governor Rotimi Amaechi speaks during the senate screening of new ministers in Abuja play Former Rivers State governor Rotimi Amaechi speaks during the senate screening of new ministers in Abuja, Nigeria October 22, 2015. (REUTERS/Stringer - RTS5PXK)
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Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi has said that he was more popular than other governor-members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) during his tenure as Rivers State Governor.

Amaechi made the comment on Wednesday, December 7, after his arrival in Port Harcourt ahead of the December 10 rerun elections in the state.

“During my tenure as governor, l never abused the office. The office of the governor is sacred and should be respected in all ramifications,” he said.

“When I was governor, I had over 75 per cent support from Rivers people and other Nigerians resident in the state. l am very sure l had more popularity than any PDP stakeholder including governors across the country.

“This is so because, as governor then, l overhauled the health and education sectors by promoting free healthcare system and free education, over 10,000 teachers were employed, including the building of critical infrastructures, roads and youth empowerment, making Rivers people and other Nigerians to experience change.

“This is another opportunity for us to exercise our right to vote for candidates of our choices. You would recall that the last time the elections were held, members of the APC were brazenly, crudely and violently prevented from exercising their inalienable rights to elect those they wanted,” he said.

“Those same characters and forces that stole our votes by violently denying us the right to vote the last time are at it again. In the months and weeks leading to this Saturday’s election, they have employed the use of violence and intimidation and harassment all aimed at preventing us from coming out to vote.

“They have turned our hitherto peaceful state into a haven of brazen criminality, culminating in killings and maiming of innocent citizens. However, it is gratifying to know that the Commander-in- Chief, President Muhammadu Buhari, has assured the security of lives and property in the state before, during and after the election. Mr. President has graciously provided adequate security through the length and breadth of the state," he added.

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Amaechi further urged supporters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to come out to vote for the party during the polls.