Tinubu vs Ngige media jabs is helping unravel personal histories Nigerians never knew about these Southern Nigerian politicians.
Ngige was the first to draw blood when he claimed he was more successful as a politician while appearing before the House of Reps probing suspension of the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF) management.
After the viral House of Reps appearance, Chuks Akunna, former Press Secretary to Ngige unleashed a tweet against his former boss. Akunna claimed that Ngige begged Tinubu for a car in 2004.
To set the records straight Ngige’s then commissioner for information , Chief Charles Amilo a.k.a Ude Obodo jumped on stage to quash Akunna claim with explanation of what really happened NAIJA NEWS NG reports.
Chief Amilo while speaking in his Anambra State home said Bola Tinubu was always collecting wrist watches from Atiku Abubakar’s hands whenever the two met.
According to him, “while Dr Ngige did not move money in bullion vans, he was not poor before he became Governor in 2003.”
He said Ngige wouldn’t have begged Tinubu for a car when he had fleet of exotic cars and a flourishing car company, ESS-DEE MOTORS on highbrow Sr. Adetokumbo Ademola Street, Victoria Island (VI) in the 90’s . He added that the sliding open roof Toyota Landcruiser used to ferry Dr Alex Ekwueme (of blessed memory) into the 1998 Jos Convention of Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) was owned by the Minister.
Chief Amilo also said James Ibori too also like Tinubu always took watches from Atiku’s hand.
Amilo said: “I was among the aides who were with Ngige anytime he went to Abuja whether on official assignment or private function, and he never at any time begged his Lagos State counterpart for a car. It never happened. Whoever told you that story is lying.”
“On the issue of car, I can remember that French President gave Asiwaju three old 2000 model 280s bullet proof. On a visit to Ngige at Abuja, Asiwaju dropped one for Ngige at his Abuja Governor’s Lodge for use when in Abuja in 2005 and kept one in Abuja, one in Lagos. Dr Ngige used it for five months before he brought it back to Tinubu to give to Olusegun Mimiko who just resigned from the Federal Executive Council ,(FEC) to join them in the Anti-Obasanjo third term struggle and had to run against PDP as the Labour Party governorship candidate in Ondo State,” he said.
He revealed that Ngige while the Governor of Anambra State was moving in bullet proof G Wagon because of the insecurity Obasanjo created in Anambra.
“So, please they should stop talking about car, especially about one who owned latest Mercedes Fulltime and Fulltime Toyota.
“Those peddling the story should go and rest as Dr Ngige is not a car freak neither is he competing with anybody for who is richer,” Amilo said.
He said Ngige was already successful from medical practice and real estate investments before joining politics.
According to Amilo, “Ngige was a Governor at the same time as Tinubu with his security vote and monthly returns from Onitsha and Nnewi traders.
“He is a medical doctor with a practice in Lagos before he went into politics. Dr Ngige lived and practiced in Victoria Island. He is a member of Ikoyi Club.
“He had a flourishing car shop and real estate businesses, apart from silent ownership and investment in about three of the highbrow Hospital-groups in Ikoyi and Victoria Island.
“He was either a Governor, a Senator and Federal Minister between 1999 and today. He always held elective or appointed political office.
“I know and we all know rich men take each other’s properties particularly cars and wristwatches.
“It was said Babangida when he was President saw cars in the VI home of his late friend, Dr Clarkson de Majomi, the Public Relations Guru. Babangida asked and got Majomi’s Jaguar car! It didn’t mean Babaginda could not afford a Jaguar car at the time,”
Amilo said Tinubu’s camp was wrong to portray Ngige as someone Tinubu rescued from trekking by gifting him a car. He also said Ngige may not move money in bullion vans but made wealth from his professions.
Chief Amilo advised Akunna “to be very careful with his fabricated lies.”
“Despite Akunna’s saboteur role of leaking information to the Uba/Obasanjo Abuja traducers, Dr Ngige rejected all entreaties for his sack by State Executive Council (Exco) members and insisted on retaining him. Ngige, however, asked that he should be sidelined but with full remunerations to enable him cater for his family,” Amilo further claimed.