The era of administering local government areas in Rivers State from Port Harcourt City was declared over last Monday as the state Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, warned the newly elected chairmen against such style of leadership.
The Governor, while swearing in the 23 elected council chairmen in Government House, Port Harcourt, said his administration will no longer tolerate a situation where LG bosses who were elected to oversee affairs at the grassroots resided or governed from the city.
Wike who was a two-term local government chairman, said the best approach to administer the rural area was for the chairmen to reside in the locality, stressing that by so doing he will know the real situation of things, especially security challenges and socio-economic trend.
He emphasised the need for the council bosses to give priority attention to regular payment of workers’ salary , and security.
He advised them to shun unnecessary trips and use of council funds for personal gains but to use the opportunity to develope their areas and leave legacies for which they would be remembered when their tenure was over.
More landmark projects executed by Governor Wike were commissioned last week as the thirdAnniversary of his administration continued to dominate affairs in Brick House.
Among the projects commissioned last week were, the Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers ultra-modern Secretariat Complex, Port Harcourt, Government Girls Secondary School, Rumuokwuta, in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area, 11 roads under Isiokpo Internal Roads Phase 1, in Ikwerre Local Government Area, 24 three bedroom flats for Civil Servants in Port Harcourt , and 15 roads in Okochiri Kingdom in Okrika Local Government Area.
Former Vice President, Atiku Abubakar, Sultan of Sokoto, Saad Abubakar, Former Governor of Plateau State, Jonah Jong, the British High Commissioner to Nigeria, Mr Paul Awkright were among personalities in the state who witnessed the events.
While reacting to questions from journalists over the avalanche of projects executed in just three years of his administration, Wike vowed that he would not take any break in initiating and executing more projects.
“ When we make promises, we fulfil our promises. We are not like those who make promises and give excuses why they cannot be achieved “, the Governor said.
Meanwhile, the Rivers State Council of Traditional Rulers , last Friday conferred on Wike with “ The Pride of Rivers State’ award.
Chairman of the council, and Amanyanabor of Opobo, King Dandeson Jaja, who presented the award at the commissioning of the new council secretariat , said the honour was in recognition of the governor’s developmental strides.
Personalities from various parts of the country who were in the state last week for one project commissioning or the other eulogised Wike for the harvest of projects.
Atiku who commissioned roads in Isiokpo in Ikwerre Local Government Area, last week, said: “ I am extremely proud of Gov Wike’ s achievements and (His) leadership”.
Another major event in Brick House last week was the visit of Niger Delta Mothers who were in Government House to protest what they termed as harassment of the former first lady , Dame Patience Jonathan by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Retain Presidency, Create Crisis In Nigeria
Ahead of the 2023 Presidency, the South-South elders have said that there will be a crisis that could tear the country apart if the North should insist on retaining the office of the President after the expiration of President Muhammadu Buhari’s tenure.
The South-South Elders also said that it was logical and fair to allow the zone to produce the President four another for years so as to complete its second tenure.
Speaking to newsmen interview in Abuja, weekend, the National Coordinator of South-South Elders Forum, His Highness, Anabs Sara Igbe said that the zone was better placed in the South to clinch the Presidency in 2023.
He argued that the North may not be comfortable to support South East candidate for now because of the civil war experience where millions of the Igbo were gruesomely murdered, adding that Ndigbo were still bitter over the alleged marginalization of the zone.
He also claimed that the North will not support the South West judging from the position of the Miyetti Allah on the recently launched security outfit by the South West. Sara Igbe, who is also the National Publicity Secretary of the Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, said that the South-South will be the stabilizing force in the country and would make the South-East feel at home.
2023: APC Chief Hails Gowon’s Stand On Igbo Presidency
The Director-General of the Voice of Nigeria, Mr Ostia Okechukwu, has commended General Yakubu Gowon (rtd) for backing the South-East for the 2023 presidency.
In an interview with the Hausa Service of the BBC in commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the end of the Civil War, Gowon said there was no problem if power shifted to the South-East in 2023.
He was the leader of the country during the war which ended in 1970.
Okechukwu said in a telephone interview with our source in Abuja on Saturday that the ex-Head of State’s position was inspiring.
The All Progressives Congress chieftain said, “I commend our elder statesman General Yakubu Gowon (retd.) for his support for power shift to the South-East in 2023.
“In league with others, one pledges that a Nigerian President of Igbo extraction will engender unity, harmony, equity and natural justice in our dear fatherland.
“Indeed the goal of unity was achieved without doubt by this model of rotation of the presidency from the South to North – the Falae/Obasanjo Model – which not only featured in 1999, although governed the 2007 and 2015 presidential elections outcome.”
Okechukwu said Gowon had always placed national interest above pecuniary interest.
The VON DG said, “The rotation or zoning convention was founded by patriots who placed national interest above self-interest, not the PDP (Peoples Democratic Party). The PDP was just a beneficiary as the contest in 1999 was between the defunct AD/APP (Alliance for Democracy/All Peoples Party) alliance.
“Please one is not saying that the rotation convention is the only position best in the democratic horizon, but as Gowon noted, one of the best and a solution provider.”
He added, “I stand with Gowon that rotation is the ligament that holds the various tendencies together, gives a sense of belonging, especially when all the geopolitical zones have highly qualified men and women.
”For the avoidance of doubt, rotation was well perfected in 1999, with the Falae/Obasanjo model and since then, the presidency has rotated between the South and North.
“The South-East is the only geopolitical zone in the southern belt that has not presided over Nigeria since 1999 when the zoning convention commenced.
“It is with nostalgia that one recalls when Olusola Saraki, Abubakar Rimi, Umaru Shinkafi, Adamu Ciroma, Alex Ekwueme of blessed memory and a host of other northerners and southerners like Ogbonnaya Onu, Emmanuel Iwuanyanwu were persuaded not to run.
“These eminently qualified personalities were prevailed upon by Nigerian patriots to sacrifice their presidential ambitions for unity, peace and justice, hence the beginning of the zoning convention.
Anambra South: Ifeanyi Ubah Faults Judegment, Files Appeal
Senator Ifeanyi Ubah and candidate of Young Progressives Party (YPP), has filed an appeal against Friday’s judgment by the Federal Capital Territory High Court sitting in Bwari, which removed him from the Senate.
Justice Bello Kawu, had in his ruling sacked Ubah and ordered that Obinna Uzoh of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) should replace him.
Speaking with newsmen in Abuja, Ubah who described the judgment as a “mere distraction,” said he has gone further to file an injunction for stay of execution on the judgment pending the determination of my appeal at the Court of Appeal in Abuja.
“I have appealed against the judge’s refusal to set aside the judgment. I have also filed an injunction for stay of execution. I have absolute confidence that the Court of Appeal will do justice and set aside the judgment,” he said.
Ubah who currently represents Anambra South, however, picked holes in the judgment on multiple grounds.
“First was that the FCT High Court lacked the territorial jurisdiction to entertain a matter that arose from Anambra South Senatorial Election Primaries,” he said.
He said the mischief of filing the case against him in Abuja and not in Anambra was to ensure that the defendant (him) and even Chris Uba of the PDP were not aware of the proceedings.
“In fact, Chris Uba filed an application asking the court to be joined as he was the authentic candidate of the PDP as confirmed by INEC,” he said.
The lawmaker said the FCT High Court also lacked the jurisdiction as the matter in question was a post-election matter already settled at the election tribunal and the Court of Appeal that gave him victory against the authentic candidate of the PDP, Chris Uba.
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