✕ CLOSE Online Special City News Entrepreneurship Environment Factcheck Everything Woman Home Front Islamic Forum Life Xtra Property Travel & Leisure Viewpoint Vox Pop Women In Business Art and Ideas Bookshelf Labour Law Letters
Click Here To Listen To Trust Radio Live

As echoes of truce, probe re-align Rivers crisis

Against the backdrop of the hardening positions of the various parties in the running political crisis in Rivers State – namely the face-off between the…

Against the backdrop of the hardening positions of the various parties in the running political crisis in Rivers State – namely the face-off between the incumbent governor Siminalayi Fubara and his predecessor Nyesom Wike, come two new factors, being the prospects of a truce and the advent of a probe of the immediate past administration of the latter. While no other expectation remains more tenable than a progression towards a truce, the advent of the probe joins the former to take the debacle to a new level of a sudden end-game or run-away escalation.

Understandably, the expectation of a truce is buoyed by the cascade of unprecedented fallouts from the crisis, each of which points to deepening impedance of the polity – at least in Rivers State the immediate theatre of the debacle. For a crisis that turns up a fresh twist on each new day, the latest twists at press time featured new developments on both sides. Interestingly too, it is in that context that the probe is coming up.

Hence for instance on the side of Nyesom Wike, there was another synchronized, new mass resignation of three carry-over commissioners in the State Executive Council – ostensibly in line with their vaunting hang-over loyalty to him, having served under him in the previous administration and still retain loyalty to him, rather than Fubara their new boss. Meanwhile, on the side of incumbent governor Siminalayi Fubara, there was the emergence of Victor Oko Jumbo as the new authentic Speaker for the Rivers State House of Assembly (RSHA) to checkmate the Martins Amaewhule led 25 turncoat legislators, who even with the loss of their seats for decamping unlawfully from their original political party – the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), but had also been indulging in renegade activities as agents provocateurs to Fubara. The foregoing was followed by the appointment of Dagogo Iboroma (SAN), as the new Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice.  These two developments invariably set the stage for the launch of the probe of the immediate past administration of Nyesom Wike.

In the contemporary run of governance in Nigeria, the launch of a probe of a past administrative dispensation by an incoming one, is largely viewed with suspicion as a sacrilege, and is often trailed by insinuations of it serving as a witch hunting exercise. Yet a probe in governance circles is simply an exercise aimed at offering the officer(s) under investigation, the opportunity of clarifying cloudy and knotty areas that may impede continuity in administration, since the primary utility of a probe is to promote accountability which is the ultimate obligation of a public officer to the wider society.

Interestingly however, in the circumstance of the Fubara-Wike tangle, the question on some lips has been why a probe at a time like this when a truce to restore status quo is contemplated. The simple valid answer here is that both the truce and a probe in the circumstances are not necessarily, mutually exclusive. Rather, both are so compatible with each other that without the probe, a sustainable truce will be hard to be facilitated. And if any member or sympathiser of Wike’s camp remains discomfited by the forthcoming probe, such a person has nobody else to direct his or her grouse to but the former governor.

In the course of baton change in governance, the tradition has been for the outgoing dispensation to provide as much acquaintance of its tenure to the incoming order, and be disposed to help the latter to take over effectively. However, all through the process of handing-over from the Wike era to the Fubara dispensation, Nigerians and the rest of the world had been witnesses to glaring breaches of this time-honoured tradition, as the former governor not only imposed a hangover of subservience on his successor, but also created far-reaching complement of statutory obligations running into billions of naira for the latter to service. The anomaly of this unwarranted twist of procedure was accentuated by Wike also imposing on Fubara his successor, a network of his loyalists to cage the latter and ensure that his (Wike) clout over Fubara’s administration did not wane.

The way forward now is for all parties to prepare for the big elephant in the room which is the forthcoming probe of the Wike administration, for the simple fact that public scrutiny has been attracted to the good, bad and ugly sides of that dispensation. Given the close working relationship between the Nyesom Wike administration and the current dispensation of Siminalayi Fubara, both sides owe the public the bounden duty of not misleading the wider society with jaundiced accounts that will further aggravate the already toxic state of affairs with governance in the state

This is also to ensure the unimpeded fast-track of a truce in the debacle, to the benefit of the good and long suffering people of the Rivers State.

Join Daily Trust WhatsApp Community For Quick Access To News and Happenings Around You.

UPDATE: Nigerians in Nigeria and those in diaspora can now be paid in US Dollars. Premium domains can earn you as much as $17,000 (₦27 million).

Click here to start earning.