Political Crisis erupts in Rivers

…state of emergency looming

The seeming peace in the political family of former Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has been shattered and is erupting into a crisis that could lead to a state of emergency.

Within a few hours, two factions of the House of Assembly had emerged. One under the speakership of Martin Amaewhule, removed the Majority Leader, Edison Ehie, said to be loyal to the governor and went on to pass a resolution directing the Clerk of the House to serve an impeachment notice on Governor Siminilari Fubara .

The other faction meeting somewhere else, impeached speaker Amaewhule and elected Ehie as speaker. It went on to suspend the Chief Judge, Chukwudi Amadi, and directed the Governor to appoint an acting Chief judge. Apparently this was done to forestall the chief Judge from constituting a panel to commence impeachment proceedings against the governor.

Citizens of the state woke up on Monday to the news that arsonists had set the House of Assembly complex on Moscow Road, Port Harcourt on fire.

Just as the residents of the state capital were trying to figure out what was going on news broke about a plot by members of the House of Assembly to remove the Majority Leader as a prelude to impeaching the Governor, Siminalayi Fubara.

Sudden reactions from Government House confirmed that there was serious trouble in government. The governor fired the Camp Commander Government House and the Chief of Staff, both said to have been imposed on him by Wike.

By this time the streets around Government House, the courts and the house assembly had been taken over by mobs and curious observers.

An attempt by the governor to inspect the burnt house of assembly was blocked by security operatives deployed to the vicinity. He returned to Government House to address a multitude of protesters, whom he told that the police had fired shots directly at him when he approached the house of assembly.

He asked those wanting to impeach him to show justification for their action. “The truth is that everybody who knows me know that i am a peaceful person,” saying he could not have been part of the destruction of the House of Assembly complex.

Meanwhile, reactions have been pouring to the developments in Port Harcourt. Niger Delta leader, Edwin Clark, said he was “greatly disturbed” by the development and asked President Bola Tinubu to call to order the Minister of Federal Capital, Nyesom Wike, who he accused of masterminding the crisis.

Rivers State Council of Elders led by Henry Aguma and Mike Lube asked Wike to “allow Sim Fubara to breathe”.

Rivers State Indigenous NGOs and Civil Society Network led by Tombari Dumka-Kote asked the feuding parties to “sheathe their swords and give peace a chance in the interest of the state and wellbeing of citizens.”

Former Commissioner for Information of the state, Ibim Semenitari, was rather cautious saying, “It is one Rivers State , One People under God.”

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