The Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike has taken a swipe on the National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, describing him as one who lacks leadership abilities to lead the party to greater heights.
The governor compared Secondus’ leadership to that of former National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, which he said, landed the country in chaos.
Wike made this assertion in Abuja at the 60th birthday celebration of former Governor of Cross River State, Senator Liyel Imoke, which also marked the 10th anniversary of his foundation, The Bridge Leadership Foundation (TBLF) as well as the 11th Career Day Conference of the foundation.
He blamed Secondus for the current crisis in the party, pointing out that the defections in Cross River State was a result of his lack of good leadership skills.
“Talking about leadership, unfortunately, the national chairman (Secondus) left before I started. We should not be theoretical but practical in what we practice. He goes to the church, you see the pastor, you pontificate him. He leaves the church, he does a different thing. What is the problem with this country: it’s leadership.
“If he (Secondus) had shown leadership in Cross River, our party would not have had the problem we have today. The national chairman said we need good leadership in the country, but if you don’t show good leadership, the party cannot produce good leaders. That is the truth of the matter.
“We talk about character. What is leadership? Leadership is about character, boldness, selflessness and audaciousness. As a leader, you must have character. Not to speak white in the morning and you speak black in the evening. Is that leadership? What are we telling our youths? We are talking about the future of this country!”
The governor called on the youths to be bold, expressive and always stand on the side of truth, as he noted that the future of the country lies in their hands.
“Our youths must be audacious. In essence, they should speak out. They should be bold. How many of us have been bold to speak out from our party? Those who are bold, those who are fair, those who have character, do you want them to exist? Certainly not”, said Wike, who described Secondus as one who did not possess the qualities of a good leader.
“Leadership is that you must decide whether to stand for the truth or not. You must decide whether to do the right thing or not. Leadership is the ability to say the decision I took was wrong and I have accepted that I was wrong and now I am in the position to correct it. There is nothing wrong with you admitting that you are wrong. That is one quality of a leader: To be able to identify, when he is wrong.”
He added that leadership stands on sacrifice, putting the interest of others above personal gains and enacting decisions that would move the party forward as he likened the chaos in the party to All Progressives Congress (APC) when it was under the leadership of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole.
Earlier in his remarks, former Governor of Cross River State, Senator Liyel Imoke, encouraged Nigerian youths to leverage their influence and negotiate their way into power, as he noted that despite the influence the Nigerian youths commanded both in and outside the social media, they have not been able to use the influence to break into political power.
He disclosed that the reason why the youths were constantly being sidelined by the government was as a result of poor goals set by them before venturing into politics.
He said that the influence exhibited by young people on social media was not enough as governments across Africa always had a certain influence over the operation of social media.
“Whenever you think you have such power of influence for any activity, it must be for a purpose. It must be towards an objective. And until you become part of that decision-making process, your effort will remain just an effort.
“Next time, before you finish your influences, make sure you negotiate your way into the boardroom. When you get to the boardroom, there you can influence policy. Until you get into the boardroom, you can never influence change! You can make all the noise, you can have all the activity, you can have all the followers, but, you will not change the policy.
“This is the time for a new generation to get into the boardroom; it is time for a new generation to appreciate the importance of being audacious. No one, not any one of us in front, or anyone there is going to shift! No one is going to shift by you saying, ‘please, make space for me, I am young, it is my time’.
“Nobody gave me space. At 30, nobody gave me space. It was hard work. But, the good fortune was that I wanted to be in the boardroom. The generation that we are talking to, 2023 provides you with an opportunity to be in the boardroom; provides you with an opportunity to take control and to take charge. But, it’s a lot of work. Are you ready to deliver? Are you ready to do what it takes?
Imoke, however, reminded them that just as 2023 is near, it provided them with another opportunity to get into the business of political leadership to make the change they yearned for.
He noted that it was “not enough to be a member of an organisation but to also be a member of the board, because that is where things happen, unless you are in the board, you will remain where you are”.
Also present at the event were former Senate Presidents, Dr Bukola Saraki; and Anyim Pius Anyim; and PDP National Chairman, Prince Uche Secondus, amongst others.

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