Rotimi Amaechi, former Transportation Minister, is crawling back to life after a failed presidential bid, according to Special Adviser to the President on Policy Coordination, Hadiza Bala Usman.
Amaechi was one of those who sought the presidential ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) after resigning from the cabinet of President Muhammadu Buhari.
He came second in the presidential primaries won by President Bola Tinubu.
Tinubu had subsequently snubbed him and aligned with his former godson, Nyesom Wike, who is the current Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
Coincidentally, Wike, who sought the presidential ticket of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), came second after being defeated by former Vice-President Atiku Abubakar.
However, Wike revolted against Atiku and pitched his tent with Tinubu, hence getting a lifeline while Amaechi, his estranged benefactor, suffered what could be translated as political setback.
Since the rivalry between Amaechi and Wike started, this is the first time that Amaechi would not hold any active political office.
Wike was Minister under then President Goodluck Jonathan and Amaechi governor when the duo fell apart. However, by the time Amaechi became a minister, Wike was governor.
But as things stand now, one has an active political office, while the other does not.
Apparently riding on this in the face-off with her former supervisor, the immediate past Managing Director of Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA) slammed Amaechi saying he is now seeking relevance.
She said this while reacting to the salvo the former Minister fired at her at the annual lecture organised by The Niche, an online publication.
Amaechi had accused Bala Usman of documenting false narrative in her book titled: “Stepping on Toes: My Odyssey at the Nigerian Ports Authority.”
In the book, she chronicled her emergence and struggles while she served as managing director of NPA.
Responding, Bala Usman said she had responded to virtually all the allegations levelled against her.
“He made so much fuss about whether I gave him a birthday gift or not. While this is a trivial issue, the question he should answer is whether he complained to someone that I never gave him a birthday gift as Minister or not.”
“He referenced that I worked under him from 2013 and inferred that anyone working under him for that period would have given him birthday presents. I wonder why it should be automatic to give anyone birthday presents because you work for them. Such entitlement disposition is responsible for a lot of misbehaviours exhibited by people like Mr Amaechi when Nigeria bestows them with opportunities for public office. The truth is that no one owes you anything!
“In any case, I only worked with him between December 2014 to May 2015. So, how many birthdays would have gone past within that period that I would have given him “a lot of birthday presents,” as he claimed.
If indeed I offered him a present while he was Minister and he turned down my gift, why then did he complain that amongst my “many crimes”, was the fact that I never gave him a birthday present? The Minister should please stop ridiculing himself by fabricating these stories that do not add up.
“It is a good thing to see that the former Minister has finally recovered from his failed presidential bid and is crawling back into public life. However, he should not and cannot make Hadiza Bala Usman the subject of his attempt at a rebound.
“Mr Amaechi would definitely have his perspective of the events of the five years I served Nigeria as Managing Director of the Nigerian Ports Authority under his supervision. There is no problem with that, but when he shares his perspective, I suggest that he endeavours to stick to the facts and resist the apparently usually overwhelming urge to speak arbitrarily and spread falsehood,” Bala Usman said in a statement.