‘Revoking sale of Rivers power plants political’


THE governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress in Rivers State, Pastor Tonye Cole, has described as political the state government’s termination of the sale of state-owned power plants to subsidiaries of Sahara Energy Group.
Cole, who spoke in Port Harcourt on Monday, also cautioned that the action of the state government could scare investors away from the state.
But the State Government said the APC governorship candidate should search his conscience and also go to court if he (Cole) felt that its decision ran contrary to the law.
Recall that the State Executive Council had revoked the sale of 70 percent equity of the state-owned power plants held by First Independent Power Limited in Omoku, Trans-Amadi, Afam and Eleme Gas Turbines to NG Power-HPS Limited during the immediate past administration of Rotimi Amaechi.
Cole explained that since he had resigned from Sahara Energy Group in September 2018, he would not be able to react officially, adding that he was not sure if the firm had reacted to the revocation of the sales of the power plants.
He said, “The contract they are talking about are employing people here in Rivers State. It is providing basic services and dealing with things in this economy. It was done properly under the tenets of the law.
“So, what happened a few days ago, smacks of politics, all politics left right and center and it is sad. The white man says you don’t cut your nose to spite your face.
“On the day I decided I was joining politics, I withdrew myself, signed necessary documents, removed myself from Sahara, removed all my shares, signed off everything and left.
“I left Sahara on the 1st of September (2018). I don’t take any decision or do anything with the company. I left completely because it is a totally different entity.”
But the Rivers State Government maintained that its action was based on the recommendations of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry that probed the sale of the assets owned by state government.
The Commissioner for Information and Communication, Emma Okah, said Cole was free to go court.
“The Rivers State Government is under an obligation to protect the interest of the people of the state,” Okah said.