By Sadiq Umar – The General Officer Commanding, GOC, 6 Division, of the Nigerian Army, Jamil Sarham has fired back at Rivers State governor, Nyesom Wike, accusing him offering him bribe to compromise the gubernatorial election in the state.
Mr. Sarham, a major general, said the allegations by Mr. Wike that he was leading a gang allegedly involved in oil bunkering in the state were “unfounded and false.”
Mr. Wike had last week accused Mr. Sarham of running an oil theft ring in the state. He also alleged that the army commander sent troops to assassinate him in his residence on February 15.
But in a statement by spokesman of the Army’s Division in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Aminu Iliyasu, Mr. Sarham said the attack by the Rivers governor was a vendetta war on him when he refused to accept the governor’s offer.
He also denied Mr. Wike’s allegation that he leaked proceedings of state security meetings to criminals.
“Wike’s resentment against me is based on my choice of professionalism and integrity over the billions of naira offered me by the Rivers state governor to compromise the 2019 general election,” the statement read.
“My refusal to be bought over and the rejection of the hefty offer is the genesis of Wike’s hatred and vociferous criticisms of me.
“On the mischievous accusation against Maj.-Gen. Sarham of leaking proceedings of State Security Council meetings to criminals in Rivers State, Mr. Wike knows well that Maj.-Gen. Sarham is not a member of the Rivers State Security Council, neither has he ever approached the gates of Rivers State Government House, since his assumption of office as the GOC, 6 Division.
“Mr. Wike only came face-to-face with Maj.-Gen. Sarham on the 15th of January, 2019, during the 2019-Armed Forces Remembrance Day parade at Isaac Boro Park, Port Harcourt.
“The Nigerian Army wishes to challenge Wike to provide the public with any evidence of such meetings, with Maj.-Gen. Sarham in attendance. Wike’s allegation against Maj.-Gen. Sarham’s selfish involvement in illegal oil bunkering is another reckless, spurious and mischievous accusation.
“Hence, Headquarters of 6 Division wishes to request the Rivers governor to take the most civilised way of putting up a petition to the relevant authorities, to make a point,” it added.