Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State in Abuja on Tuesday dared his political opponents to do their worst as he donated N20m at the launch of a book titled, ‘The Big Interviews’, authored by Eric Osagie, a former Managing Director of The SUN.
Wike said, “To launch this book and support Eric…I am not afraid of naming anything. I am not afraid of anybody. I will support him and launch this book with the sum of N20m.”
The Rivers State governor asked the media to be as forthright as it was during the administration of former President Goodluck Jonathan.
He said it was unfortunate that the Muhammadu Buhari government does not obey court orders.
Checks showed that the sum donated by Wike is almost equivalent to the three-year salary and allowances of a governor which is N23.3m.
According to the Revenue Mobilisation and Fiscal Commission, a governor’s basic salary is N185, 308.75 while he is entitled to a hardship allowance of N92, 654.37 and a consistency allowance of N370, 617.50 bringing the total monthly package to N648, 580.62 or N7.7m a year.
The total salary and allowances earned by a governor in three years is N23.3m.
In his response, All Progressives Congress National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, said he was not as rich as Wike.
He said he also had to curb his spending going by a recent Federal High Court judgement which ordered all former governors who now hold political office, to stop receiving pension.
Oshiomhole added, “You know there is now a court ruling about pensions. He (Wike) is not yet on that (pension) even though he has an eye on it. I don’t know how it will affect Wike. Let me say that President Buhari is practising what he is preaching.”
The governor subsequently donated N500, 000.
“We will negotiate and I will pay what I can afford and it will not be in excess of what I earn in a month. I will transfer it to you quietly because there is a new revenue board (FIRS) chairman. He will ask that we deduct consumption tax. So, thank you, I will support you with N500, 000.”
APC stalwart, Bola Tinubu, who was represented by his Media Aide, Tunde Rahman, donated N5m ditto for Governor Bello Masari of Katsina State.
Captain Hosa Okunbo, the Chief Executive Officer, Ocean Maritime Security, donated N25m on behalf of himself and his company.