Connect with us

Politics

Still On Edo, Bauchi States Assembly Crises

Published

on

In Political lexicon, especially in the African concept, power is either won or captured whether it is a so-called democratic setting or military rule. Both under democratic and military rule, the desire to win at all costs and maintain that status quo involves not only intrigues but also some level of ruthlessness and intimidation of opponent.
Most times those who lose out in the power game do not just cry foul, but also behave as if they are saints. This behaviour cuts across party lines as there is hardly any and politician in Nigeria who does not exhibit this behaviour.
Prior to the inauguration of the 8th National Assembly, the power play that brought Dr Bukola Saraki and Yakubo Dogara zx Senate President and Speaker House of Representatives respectively is well known as the godfathers who felt that it was their sole right to appoint the senate President or Speaker of the House of Representative lost out. However, the shame they brought to the country was of no consequence as they believed it was only their will that must be done.
Today, the situation is not all that different even at the state level, where individuals still prefer the speaker or Deputy Speaker of a house of Aassembly.
Recently, states like Edo and Bauchi were in the news a lot of house trading, scheming and shouting took place in these legislatures following the emergence of some honourable members as speakers and deputy speakers.
In Edo State, there was a running battle between the governor Mr Godwin Obaseki and the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, on who becomes a principal officer of the Edo State House of Assembly, and at the end of the tussle, the Godwin Obaseki faction emerged victorious with his preferred candidates emerging Speaker and Deputy Speaker.
Here, the Nigerian incumbency factor played a very crucial role as 8 out of the 24 members won outright, indicating that in this country anything is possible as no Governor will allow his opponents to outwit him in the game of thrones and patronage.
This same game of power was just a replica of what happened in 2014, when the house of assembly was ingulfed in crisis over who became the Speaker. over that situation was a bit different as the power equation in the assembly was evenly balanced, between the APC and the PDP. But, sadly in 2019, all the gladiators belong to the APC, yet there was still infighting.
The major question is, why is the APC, which has both the executive and legislative arms in its pocket, still behaving as if they belong to two different political parties? Reacting to the crisis, the immediate past National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, John Odigie-Oyegun, accused his successor, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, of trying to undermine the Obaseki’s administration.
However, the 15-member-elect, who were absent during the Monday night inauguration, are still insisting on proper inauguration, arguing that the house was not properly inaugurated and that the government has no right to foster a leadership on them.
This same scenario also played out in Bauchi State where II out of the 33 members elected a speaker and deputy speaker. But the difference here is that the APC has a majority of 22-member-elect but were clearly outwitted by their opponents.
How did we get here? Under the 1999 constitution, section 92 (1), Chapter V, states that there shall be a speaker and a Deputy Speaker of a State House of Assembly, who shall be elected by the members of the House from among themselves.
Section 98 (1 and 2) clearly stipulates that voting must be by a simple majority. The question is, were those guidelines followed? In any power tussle in Nigerian politics, it has always been to outwit the opponent remained outwit your opponents, then let them fight you from the This has always been the case at whatever level of election, as nobody likes losing out in elections.
Here, people do not ask whether there is right or wrong, but who won at the end. If the losing camp had the day, they would have attributed such success to the will of God. So, to whom will they attribute their failure, if not God?
What most people in politics don’t take into cognizance is that in every power play, it is usually ‘dribble your opponent, using every weapon at your disposal. Politics is war, don’t give excuses for your failures’.
Today, Rt Honourable Frank Okiye of Edo State and Abubakar Suleiman are Speakers but the situation can change anytime as no condition is permanent. That is why the utterances of Comrade Oshiomhole should be condemned by all lovers of democracy. Oshiomhole even had the effrontery to give directives to the Inspector-General of Police “Not to provide security to the Houses of Assembly in Bauchi and Edo State”. So it is the great Comrade that is now controlling the Nigerian Police. Tin god syndrome has no place in Nigeria democracy.
Since every State House of Assembly is independent and autonomous, let the members sort themselves out and the least interference in the system the better.
We can always disagree to agree why sometimes people begin to question the quality of representation we get at the legislature. Most executives from the Presidency down to the state level, want absolute loyalty and are afraid of the unknown. That is why they want a rubber stamp legislative arm. That is also why most houses of assembly are not robust in lawmaking.
In the Second Republic under the late President Shehu Shagari, the quality of representation was very high at both the national and state assemblies. We never heard or read in the papers about midnight or 6am inauguration of the legislative arm or even factional Speakers. Today, even within the same political party there is always fighting, violence and court injunctions.
Nigeria did not vote honourable members to fight among themselves but to render serve to the populace; all those elected as state legislators should start exhibiting some sense of maturity and stop running to Abuja to seek support when they eventually lose out in their ambition to clinch a particular position. After all, in politics in those parts of the world, is either a game of numbers or using every means to outfox your opponent.
Governors Godwin Abaseki and Bala Mohammed will be savouring their victory as Kingmakers. If they had failed in their first task as Chief Executives, their swearing-in, then it would have shown that they did not have clout and that they lack the scheming skills as politicians in Nigeria.
The losers in the this first round should also learn that there is always real power at the hand of the governors, who at all times can grant favour. You just don’t toy with the executive as a legislator and if in doubt, ask Bukola Saraki.

 

Tonye Ikiroma-Owiye

Continue Reading

Politics

Rivers Crisis: PDP Chairman Hails Jonathan’s Call For Truce

Published

on

The Lagos State chapter Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Philip Aivoji, has described former President Goodluck Jonathan’s call to end the political crisis in Rivers as commendable.
Mr Aivoji commended Jonathan  in an interview with The Tide‘s source on Monday in Lagos.
Recall that Jonathan had on Monday implored Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers  and his predecessor, (the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT) Chief Nyesom Wike, to sheathe their swords in order to douse the political temperature in the state.
The former president, who spoke at the inauguration of the N222.1 billion Trans-Kalabari Road construction, emphasised the necessity for Fubara and Wike to collaborate to promote the  progress and prosperity of Rivers State.
He noted that the political tension in the state was excessive and worrisome, and would not contribute to  development.
Jonathan said that destabilising Rivers State would adversely impact the Niger Delta region and could also trigger crises across the country.
Reacting to Jonathan’s admonition, Mr Aivoji described the former President as a man full of experience in mediation and conflict resolution, even at the international level.
“Jonathan is a leader in the party and a leader from South South; there is nothing wrong stepping in to broker peace. It is a good one,” the PDP boss said.
He, however, said that the former President should go further to speak the truth to the warring parties and point out  to each of them where they had erred.
“This is the way to settle issues. If we want to resolve it, we must tell the truth to them.
“The ex-President is an elder, he is an experienced person, who has been meditating in international affairs. Let us see how it goes,” he added.
According to him, the former President, being experienced mediator, must dig deep and probe the cause of the crisis.
“He (Jonathan) has seen it all. Peace of graveyard will not help the matter, they should resolve issues.
“We hope that the nitty-gritty will be looked into and the constitution of the party will be followed if they are true members of the party,” Aivoji said.

 

Continue Reading

Politics

Group Carpets Amaewhule Over Political Crisis In Rivers 

Published

on

A group, Coalition of Rivers State Leaders of Thought (CORSLOT) has blamed the former Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt Hon. Martins Amaewhule, for the escalation of the political crisis in the State.
The coalition, which stated this at a media briefing in Port Harcourt, said Rivers State would not have been in its current political situation had Rt Hon Amaewhule played the sacred role providence bestowed on him.
The text for the briefing which was read by the Convener, High Chief Sunnie Chukumele, and co-signed by Prof (Mrs) Reginah Azunwena, Odinaka Osundu, George Ijoma and Elder Anuage Menegbo, also commended Governor Siminalayi Fubara for his peaceful disposition despite the crisis, adding that this disposition has marked the governor as a man of peace.
“Pitiably under him, the world saw a legislative arm of government that was vehemently out to frustrate the executive arm with all sorts of negative actions against the governor and the government of Rivers State.
“Had Martins Amaewhule seen the state as sacred, he would have mediated in whatever were the issues between our former governor, His Excellency, Chief (Barrister) Nyesom Wike. Amaewhule failed woefully to play a stabilizing role which his exalted office gave him ample role to play”, they said.
The Coalition also called on former Governor Nyesom Wike to have a rethink on the political crisis in the state as he has a cardinal role to play in the resolution of the impasse.
“CORSLOT wishes to advise trouble entrepreneurs and eye service politicians of Rivers State origin to take note that power belongs to God Almighty and the people.
“Rivers people are taking note of these political actors.
“Rivers State is owned by Rivers people and not  self seeking politicians”, they said.
“We begin by appreciating the governor of Rivers State, Sir Siminalaye Fubara, for working assiduously for peace by embracing and working with the Presidential Peace Accord of 2023 and to state that it is in recognition of this that the governor has won awards and honours within the state and Nigeria”
The Coalition also thanked the Governor for attending to the needs and welfare of citizens of the state, particularly the welfare of civil servants and the planned employment into the Civil Service.
“CORSLOT further recognizes the governor’s attention on infrastructural development in the state with his continuation of projects he inherited from previous administrations and indeed his bold initiatives of new ones.
These come with spiraling advantages”, they added.
They also urged the governor to take immediate steps to fill his cabinet with men and women who have the capacity to add value to the State.

By: John Bibor

Continue Reading

Politics

Council Boss Hails Fubara Over Successful Project Commissioning

Published

on

Following the successful commissioning of the  Andoni Section of the Ogoni-Andoni- Opobo Unity Road by Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, the Chairman of Opobo/Nkoro Local Government Area, Hon. Enyiada Cookey-Gam has commended the number one citizen of the state for his multiple  infrastructural development projects that have direct bearings on the lives and well -being of Rivers people, especially in NgoTown, headquarters of Andoni Local Government Area and its adjoining environs.
The Chairman maintained that the road, as commissioned, will provide connectivity between coastal communities, cities, and hinterlands, facilitating the movement of people, goods and services, which enhances trade, commerce and tourism, and also contributes to local economic development and the local government area’s internally generated revenue (IGR).
On the event, Hon. CookeyGam lauded the efforts of the initiator of the project, 24 years ago, Dr.Peter Odili, former governor of Rivers State, for his determination and love for the people that found expression in the initiation of the Unity Road project which has been able to connect the catchment local government areas of Khana, Andoni and Opobo/ Nkoro, including the neighbouring states.
He described both Dr. Odili and Governor Fubara as beacons of infrastructural development.
The Chairman of Council also urged Andoni people to guard against vandalization and theft of the facilities that have been put in place for their betterment.
He further admonished the people of Andoni in particular, and Rivers people in general, to support the good work the Governor has come to do despite distraction from some politicians in the state who do not mean well for the people.

By: Bethel Toby

Continue Reading

Trending