Wike during activities to celebrate former Governor Peter Odili at 74, pointed at some of the party leaders who, on his 2021 birthday, indicated interest to fly the ticket, but failed in the end as spearheading the gang up against him.
“Then, they presented me a letter that I should run for president. All of them including Dr. Abiye (Sekibo) signed the document. I say okay, you people too should go and give me someone who will be governor after me. They all sat there, looking left and right.
Wike further narrated that same elders also signed to abide by whatever outcome of the governorship primary, alleging that because they never succeeded in the primary, they turned around now to accuse him of pursuing a third term.
“But now, they went to Abuja, that I must not be vice president. I also read, yesterday when I was in Paris, one of them saying that I told him that if they do to me what they did to Dr. Odili that I will collapse the system.
“I am not an ungrateful person and I will never be ungrateful in my life. What’s important is that I have done well as a governor. I am happy and I am leaving office a happy man.”
On how he has benefitted the mentorship of Dr. Odili, the Rivers governor said because he trusted the advise of the former governor, he not surprised at the turn of events and the outcome of the PDP presidential primary.
He described Dr. Peter Odili a true leader of men who groomed many, and supported a lot of persons to political lamplight particularly in Rivers State and across the country.
“There was a time every political class abandoned Dr. Odili. This is a man who gave us everything. Some people called him Mr. Donatus. There was no abuse he did not get. Everybody he tried to help their families, at the end of the day, all betrayed him.
“For us, we have used him as a school and we thank him for making himself available for us to use him to learn so that we won’t be shocked of whatever that is going to happened”, he highlighted
In his response, Dr. Peter Odili said himself and his wife, Hon. Justice Mary Odili (retired) were overwhelmed by the birthday gift courtesy of the State government.
Odili explained that during his tenure as governor, governor Wike was the best performing council chairman in the State.
He lauded governor Wike for investing in human capacity development, infrastructure and building the best Law School campus in Port Harcourt.
In goodwill messages, governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State harped on the need for all Nigerians to work together to enthrone fairness, justice and equity in all facet of society, which Odili has always stood for
Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu noted that Dr. Odili is a great leader who had impacted on many life across the country, as former Cross River State, Donald Duke, commended Dr. Odili for being a role model and comporting himself very well after leaving office.
In his homely at the thanksgiving mass, Monsignor Pius Kii said Nigeria missed the opportunity of having Dr. Peter Odili as their president because he would have used his farsighted ability, courage and adaptive capacities to solve Nigeria’s many problems.