- There is a serious allegation hanging over the head of Rotimi Amaechi, the minister of transportation
- Governor Nyesom Wike has claimed that Amaechi, his predecessor, abandoned a state-owned aircraft in Germany since 2012
- The Rivers governor alleged that the minister failed to mention anything about the plane to him when he came into office in 2015
According to Governor Nyesom Wike, his administration recently uncovered a Rivers state-owned Legacy 600 aircraft abandoned in Germany by the then government of Rotimi Amarchi in 2012.
Wike made this disclosure when he led some delegates to meet with the general manager, business development of General Atomics Aerotec in Munich, Germany, Markus Froetschi.
Revealing more about the plane, the fiery governor noted that it was purchased by the administration of Amaechi's predecessor, Peter Odili, and claimed that retrieving the plane will cost the state nothing less than 300 million Euros, The Guardian added.
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Wike wondered why no mention of the aircraft was made to him at the point Amaechi handed over to him in 2015 and how the period of inspection for the plane exceeded six months, which he noted was the standard duration for the process.
Speaking with Froetschi, the governor said:
“When we came into office in 2015, we never had an idea that our plane was in your facility. It was a matter of asking questions before we got the information that Legacy 600 belonging to our state is in RUAG, General Atomics.
“We tried to make contact with you and which you obliged. So, we want to sincerely thank you for not hiding anything from us, because it is the property of the State government.
“This plane was bought in 2003 by the government of Dr. Peter Odili, and by 2007, he had handed over to the next government which was my predecessor’s, now, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi. While he was in office, in 2012 this plane was brought here. Reasons we do not know.
“The issue is, why was there no documentation to let the incoming government know that we have this facility and that it was sent to Germany for whatever reason? Again, I do know from experience that inspection of such facility does not take more than six months.
“So, if it was brought in 2012, expectantly at least, by early 2013, the plane ought to have come back for use.”
I employed you, I can't bring myself to your level, Amaechi fires back at Wike
The minister, reacting to an earlier comment by the Rivers governor, said that it is not in his character to join issue with the governor, especially since, according to him, Wike was one of his staff while he was in office.
"He was my staff, I can’t bring myself low. I was a governor, I was also a speaker, I’m a minister. I was the two-term chairman of the governors’ forum. The same when I was a speaker. Why should I be discussing him?”