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Rivers Crisis: Why Rivers elders are against me – Nyesom Wike

The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, has berated some elders of Rivers State for rejecting the outcome of President Bola Tinubu’s intervention in the raging rift between him and Governor Siminalayi Fubara....For More CONTINUE THE FULL READING▶▶

Mr Wike, a former Rivers State governor and his successor, Mr Fubara, have been fighting over the control of political power in the oil-rich state, leaving the state legislature battered as lawmakers split into two factions.

President Tinubu in an attempt to mediate in the crisis about a week ago, met at the Presidential Villa, the second in less than two months, with Messrs Fubara and Wike in the company of some other leaders from the state.

The meeting led to the signing of an 8-point peace deal, which the Rivers Elders Forum has dismissed, describing the terms as “one-sided” — in favour of Mr Wike — and a violation of the Nigerian Constitution.

The group said although it solicited Mr Tinubu’s intervention in the political crisis, it could not say if the intervention has “solved or escalated the crisis”. It described the terms of Mr Tinubu’s peace deal as a violation of Nigeria’s constitution.
Why Rivers Elders are against me

Speaking in Port Harcourt on Sunday at a Thanksgiving service and marriage anniversary celebration of Des George-Kelly, his ally, who recently resigned as works commissioner in Mr Fubara’s cabinet, Mr Wike warned the people not to “get involved in any fight between two politicians without knowing the root cause.”

He criticised Rivers elders for saying President Tinubu lacks the constitutional power to give the directives as contained in the peace deal.

In any facet of life, there are rules and they must be obeyed. As a pastor, there are rules you must follow. So as politicians, we must follow rules.

“While I was governor I followed those rules, and that’s why I was able to succeed.

“When I was running for governor in 2014/2015, I was invited that some elders wanted to see me. When I got there, I saw only two people. Just two of them constituted themselves as elders over the whole state.

“They said elders of the state have decided that I should not contest the election. I said it must be a joke. Now they’ve come back again as elders.

“Check everyone there, some of them their sons lost the election. Everybody wants to take their pound of flesh. ‘Wike prevented me from this. Wike made me not to be that. Wike made me not to be that.’ Even those that Wike made have joined them.”

He criticised the elders for rejecting the outcome of the president’s intervention it solicited.

“You are the ones who said the President should intervene. Now the President has come to bring peace, you said no, you don’t have the constitutional powers.

“All of us must love this state but don’t listen to propaganda. There is nothing I’m looking for in this state now. I have my own budget as FCT Minister. I have my own commissioners.

“All I’m saying is if you are a politician play according to the rules,” Mr Wike said, a statement that suggests his successor must have reneged on an undisclosed agreement entered into before the election.
Crisis

Rivers State has been engulfed in a political crisis since late October after some lawmakers loyal to Mr Wike attempted to impeach Mr Fubara, a situation that led to the bombing of a section of the assembly complex.

The crisis took a new turn, with the 27 pro-Wike lawmakers defecting to the APC, a development that prompted Mr Fubara-backed lawmakers led by Edison Ehie to declare their seats vacant after securing a court order to continue legislative business without interference.

President Tinubu in an attempt to solve the political crisis invited both factions to Abuja where an 8-point peace deal was signed.

In the deal, President Tinubu directed the defected lawmakers whose seats were declared vacant to return to assembly with their rights and privileges restored but several groups and individuals, including Rivers Elders Forum, argued it was a violation of the country’s constitution which only allows them to return through a fresh election.

Mr Fubara was directed to withdraw all cases he and his team instituted in the court as a result of the crisis while the pro-Wike lawmakers were asked to drop the impeachment.

For the N800 billion 2024 budget which was passed by the assembly and signed into law, Governor Fubara was directed to again present the budget to the assembly and also, forward names of nine Wike allies who resigned as commissioners to the assembly for approval and reappointment.

About the author

Bunady

JOLOWO BUNALAYEFA PIUS is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for BUNADY NEWSLITE GLOBAL ENTERPRISE (Bunady.com). He started his Blogging/Journalism career at God's Own Wireless Company 2012. He's a graduate of Adekunle Ajasin University Akungba Akoko Ondo State, with a major in History And International Studies. You can contact him for press events, advertisement promotions on Email: contact.bunady@gmail.com

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