Rivers State Government Blasts Ahmed Gulak, Challenges President Jonathan To Declare Stand On Democratic Principle
The government of Rivers State has blasted Ahmed Gulak, the Presidential Adviser on Political Matters, for his contemptuous lack of basic democratic tenets and principles, and challenged President Goodluck Jonathan to dissociate himself from the perverse remarks his adviser made in the press.
In a statement today by David Iyofor, Spokesman to Governor Amaechi, the Rivers State Government said Mr. Gulak sadly painted the President Goodluck Jonathan presidency as a partisan and undemocratic one with no regard or respect for the peoples' mandate expressed through the ballot box.
The government was responding to comments by Mr. Gulak in The PUNCH newspaper today that the Presidency does not recognize Rivers State Governor, Mr. Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, as the duly elected Chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF).
Commenting on a retreat of the NGF in Sokoto on Saturday, Mr. Gulak told the newspaper that Mr. Jonathan recognizes the faction led by Plateau State Governor Jonah Jang.
“What happened in Sokoto was not a retreat for the Nigeria Governors’ Forum,” he said. “It was an event for Amaechi Governors Forum. As far as the President is concerned, Governor Jonah Jang of Plateau State is the Chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum and not Amaechi.”
The Rivers State Government reminded Mr. Gulak that at the NGF chairman held last May, Governor Amaechi defeated Governor Jang by 19 votes to 16.
“But for the Jonathan Presidency (according to Gulak) 16 is greater 19!” the statement said.
“We, like most Nigerians, are further saddened that the likes of Gulak in the Presidency are so ignorant and totally bereft of substance that they lack the capacity to comprehend the quantum of damage comments like that do to the President and the Presidency, they are paid with taxpayers money to serve and protect. By his comments in PUNCH, repugnant Gulak just told Nigerians and the world, that the Presidency (off course with President Jonathan) do not respect, have no regard and do not recognized the result of a free and fair voting process that produced a clear winner in the person of Governor Amaechi.”
It warned that the issue is not about Governor Amaechi, but about respecting and recognizing a democratic, electoral process that produced a winner.
It described as “rude, uncharitable, ill-mannered and nonsensical” for Gulak, an appointed aide to condescendingly, derisively and superciliously refer to elected governors as ‘Amaechi Governors Forum.’
“Ahmed Gulak and his likes in the Presidency must be told in unambiguous terms that the Governors Forum is the internal business of the governors and who becomes their chairman can only be determined by the governors and the governors alone; and certainly not the Presidency. And for now, the majority of governors have democratically elected Governor Amaechi to serve as their chairman. Governor Amaechi remains the only authentic chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum. Casting nasty aspersions on governors elected by their people will never change that fact.”
The Rivers State Government expressed the hope that in his remarks to The Punch, Gulak was only speaking his “wrenched and warped” mind.
“We want to assume that his comment to PUNCH which is an obnoxious and futile attempt to distort the fact was not authorized by President Goodluck Jonathan. This is why it is imperative and pertinent for the Presidency to dissociate itself and President Goodluck Jonathan from the unbefitting, perverse, delinquent and pigheaded comment of Gulak on who is the authentic chairman of Nigeria Governors’ Forum.”
Analysts say that by directly challenging President Jonathan to declare his stand openly on this matter, the Rivers State Government in effect challenges him to declare whether he will stand for rigged elections and processes to benefit himself, his presidency and his faction of the Peoples Democratic Party as the country looks forward to the 2015 watershed elections.