A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State, Dr. Dakuku Peterside has said that Governor Nyesom Wike’s lack of economic blueprint and insensitivity is one of the major drawbacks of the state.
According to him, had Wike been resourceful enough, thousands of Rivers youth would have been taken off the streets via employment and grants for small and medium scale enterprises.
The former governorship aspirant noted that a serious governor, with airport and seaports, will carefully develop the state as the logistics hub of south-south Nigeria, with its attendant employment and economic benefits.
Dr. Peterside, who spoke at the weekend, stressed that Rivers State would have been in serious competition with some states, especially Lagos in terms of ideas, policies, and programmes aimed at making lives and businesses better.
The former House of Representatives member accused the governor of shutting down genuine businesses in that state, in addition to frustrating small and medium scale enterprises that are struggling to survive by the day. “Governor Wike by his lack of understanding of how businesses work has literarily shut down a vista of employment opportunities for Rivers Youth, “Dakuku said.
He stated that the present administration in the state has done nothing to create employment and business opportunities for the teeming youth.
Dr. Peterside was particularly piqued that the governor was increasingly becoming a despot with decisions that could have been taken by government officials now being single-handedly determined by him in Government House, Port Harcourt.
The immediate past Director-General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA) stressed that the actions of the governor would scare away potential investors and pursue those already struggling under numerous taskforces set up by the state government who are daily pilloried for all manner of levies.
He noted that the recent decision of the governor to personally register motorcycles used for courier and other delivery services and shut down some was not just draconian but a “thoughtless, inconsiderate and wicked manifestation of a dictator.”
According to him, “Is the government now saying that the ministry of transport is incapable of handling a simple assignment of registration or that the commissioner is not responsible enough to undertake such exercise?
“The way and manner Governor Wike treat his commissioners’ leave so much to be desired. Most of them have been rendered redundant and ineffective. They are afraid to even offer reasonable suggestions to the governor as that could amount to automatic sack, not to even talk of them handling assignments enjoined by their offices.
“For a governor that has not employed or even promoted workers in seven years, his inconsiderate decision has now thrown more people into the labour market. If he were to be forward-thinking, the governor would have looked at ways of tackling whatever challenges better rather than creating more problems,” he emphasised.