Wike maintained that all Nigerians remained equal stakeholders in the country.
The governor said that Rivers people deserved the total respect of other Nigerians because of their contributions to the sustenance of the country.
Speaking during the courtesy visit by Ogbakor Ikwerre Cultural Organisation Worldwide on Friday, Wike said, “Nigeria belongs to all of us. No one ethnic group can claim ownership of the country.
“Nobody should make you feel like second class citizens. If there are any first class citizens, Rivers people are the first class citizens, since they provide the resources that sustain the country.”
He stated that Rivers State would have collapsed if God had not been on the side of the state, noting that everything had been done to paralyse the state’s development, but the state had always risen above the evil machinations against it.
He assured the people of the state that he would always place the interest of the state above any other considerations.
“No amount of persecution will stop me from doing what is right. I will continue to defend the interest of our people. I am from Rivers State and I will protect the interest of the state,” he said.
The governor called on the Ogbakor Ikwerre Cultural Organisation Worldwide to team up with other ethnic groups to develop the state, saying, “All ethnic groups must work in unity to ensure that Rivers State attains development.”
In his remarks, President of Ogbakor Ikwerre Cultural Organisation Worldwide, Prof. Simeon Achinehu, lauded the governor for the statewide development since he assumed office.
Achinehu declared that his organisation appreciated the achievements of the governor, promising that the organisation will host him to a reception.