Anambra State State Governor, Chukwuma Soludo, on Thursday described as mischievous, alleged rift between him and former governor and Presidential Candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi.
He insisted that Obi remained his brother, irrespective of their political differences.
The Governor, had in an article titled, ‘History beckons and I will not be silent,’ dismissed chances of the Labour Party flag bearer in the coming presidential poll, just as he criticised the style of Ndigbo in its quest for the country’s number one seat in
The article drew mixed reactions across the country and particularly on social media, where Soludo was heavily criticised.
But speaking at St. Patrick’s Cathedral Awka, during the Thanksgiving mass for Most Rev. Paulinus C. Ezeokafor in celebration of his 70th birthday, Soludo said he would soon be meeting with Obi to iron out their rifts.
He also dismissed as laughable $28 million bribery allegations to run down the LP’s Presidential candidate, saying he would have been a trillionaire if he was into such.
He said, “Today is very special. When we came into the service, it was the first time, my brother, Peter Obi and I are meeting at a public event and in a Catholic Church which the two of us belong to. I think it was divine.
“When I came in, I quickly went to where he sat and hugged him, people watched with bewilderment as if we were acting drama. Is it not the same people quarrelling?
“Let me tell you, we spoke two times, just last night. We’re brothers. You know I’m not one of those politicians that speak from two sides of the mouth. I can’t pretend. I’m a politician, but also want to make heaven. I’ll keep saying the truth.
“There’s no rift between Obi and me at a personal level. Nobody snatched each other’s wife. What appears to be the rift between us is fundamental political differences. Nothing else.
“So for those forging blackmail and all that, including the one they said I collected bribe to say what I said, I asked them to bring it so I use it to construct roads. If Soludo is into bribes, I would have been multi trillionaire.
“On the fundamental differences we have, we are going to meet in the next few week’s time. We’ve agreed to discuss and iron out our differences. Unfortunately, he’s left. We must get it done. Anambra is for all of us.
Appreciating God for sparing the life of the celebrant to celebrate 70 years birthday, Soludo said Ezeokafor has been of great influence on him and his government, especially in the area of prudence and patronage of locally made products.
He said, “You changed my thinking when you visited my village house in 2019 and rejected the foreign wine offered to you in the place of palm wine. Today in the governor’s lodge, the highest wine served there is palm wine.
“I was also humbled by the moderate type of car you drove to my house. You told me you chose not to go with a vehicle far above the average of those you’re pastoring. I think this is exemplary.
“When you see me drive Innoson cars, that’s part of the inspiration I got from you. If not for security, I would have been riding a bicycle to work.
“We’re taking the prudence you taught us to the next level because when we came in, it cost us over N137 million to clean offices, now, it cost barely N11 million. I can only promise to take the message to the world.”
Peter Obi, in his congratulatory message to the Prelate, said he deeply cherished his friendship, particularly his support during his challenging tenure as Governor and thereafter.
He said, “Looking back in time, one can only say that you’ve dutifully continued to execute your covenant with God and his people in all ramifications.
“The love of God which radiates through you to all the faithful is aptly captured in your motto which all the activities planned for your birthday, including empowerment of less privileged, are a practical demonstration of.
“Right from your priestly days, you’ve continued to deploy your knowledge and rich experience in the discharge of your pastoral duties. People and institutions that have interacted with you appreciate your dedication and hardwork.