Chief Anabs Sara Igbe, Kalabari leader and chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has reaffirmed his resolve to vote for Dr. Dakuku Peterside, governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, APC in Rivers State regardless of his membership of PDP. Sara Igbe also promised to vote for General Muhammadu Buhari, presidential candidate of the APC because of what he described as unjustified exclusion and intimidation of some people in Rivers State by the powers that be in Abuja
The Kalabari leader made the statement at a luncheon of Kalabari chiefs and elders with Peterside in Port Harcourt.
Sara Igbe who described justice as an indivisible word, called on those preaching justice and equity in Abuja to come home and feel the gratuitous injustice playing out in Rivers State.
He accused the First Family, President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife Patience of deliberately punishing the Kalabari and entire people of Rivers State by the imposition of Nyesom Wike as the PDP governorship candidate.
“You all know that I am a PDP member but I will not speak for PDP here. This is a very serious issue, so I must be objective and fair because even God is a God of justice. They refused to give us ticket because they were afraid that Soku Oil Wells will go back to Rivers State.
“So they searched for a man who hates Kalabari people and gave the governorship ticket. I have known Wike for many years; I know where he stands on issues, so I will not vote for him. I stand for justice, equity and fair play, these are what Peterside represents. That is why I will vote for APC.
“But I will not leave PDP. Let me also tell you that Patience Jonathan hates Kalabari people, that was why she brought Wike. So Kalabari people must support Peterside. As chiefs and leaders, we must stand up and defend our territory or become conquered slaves. Let us vote for Peterside because he will represent our collective interest.
“Our forefathers fought and defended our territories and nothing can destroy it now. The time has come for us to defend our communities or we will be slaves forever. Rivers State is for all of us, so we must stand up and say enough is enough”.
He added that President Jonathan has never hidden his hatred for Kalabari people. Sara Igbe recalled how, under the late President Umar Yar Adua, Jonathan, then a Vice President denied Kalabari nation the opportunity of producing the managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC even after the late president had recommended.
In the same vein, another Kalabari leader, Chief Bekinbo Soberekan expressed faith and confidence in the candidacy of Peterside. “I believe in Nigeria, I believe in Izon nation and I believe in Rivers State. Peterside, the APC candidate is flying the flag of all peace loving people of our state, therefore he needs our support. Politics is about interest and sense. This young man is honest, humble, independent-minded and passionate about the development of Rivers State. Go home and tell everyone that our survival as a people depends on Peterside, so we must be careful in order not to regret tomorrow”, he said.
In his speech, Peterside thanked the chiefs and leaders of Kalabari Kingdom for speaking out in this season of election when truth and courage are in short supply. He said that he fully appreciates the fact that Rivers is a multi-ethnic state; therefore he will do his best to run an inclusive government that will positively affect all and sundry.