Rivers state political imbroglio: The only panacea for peace

Rivers state political imbroglio: The only panacea for peace




Like every other Nigerian, I have been following the political development in oil rich State of Rivers with keen interest. Different political pundits have come up with different opinions with regards to who carries the guilt/blame. It’s on this backdrop that I considered it highly imperative to air my view concerning the months-old political logjam. I will like to use illustrations from education, social and spiritual angles to do justice to this subject matter.


From the education perspective, permit me to use taxonomy of education, popularly known as Bloom’s taxonomy of learning which captures the areas learners are to be taught for their individual benefits and the benefits of the society, by extension.


According to Bloom and his associates, there are three domains of learning taught at different levels of our schooling, namely; cognitive, affective and psychomotor. But for the sake of this piece, I will like to examine the AFFECTIVE DOMAIN. Affective domain refers to, according to Krathwohl, Bloom and Masia (1973), the manner in which we deal with things emotionally, such as feelings, values, appreciation, enthusiasm, motivations, attitudes etc. Affective domain, like Cognitive aspect of learning, is graded by the teachers as a means of acknowledging the behavioural performance of the learners in this area, at the end of every term. This is simply to encourage our children who are the leaders of tomorrow to imbibe some good qualities which will ultimately guarantee peace in our society. One of these qualities/virtues is Appreciation/Gratitude. According to Cicero, “Gratitude is not only the first but the mother of all virtues”. It’s obvious former Governor Wike was the one God Almighty used for the enthronement of Governor Fubara as the Chief Executive of the Rivers State. I have no doubt, he was chosen, preferred above over two million people in Rivers State and anointed by HE former Governor Wike to succeed him in office. Before he was preferred above others, there must have been a very cordial relationship between the two. I watched Governor Fubara’s interview, immediately after his election where he said he preferred to call his benefactor, ‘Oga’ than calling him ‘His Excellency’. This attested to the level of intimacy between the duo.


From the social perspective, a person that was assisted to achieve a cause, aspiration, ambition or anything must not forget s/he that God Almighty used for him to realize such an ambition. He mustn’t forget the pot that gave him water while he was thirsty not to talk of having effrontery to make an attempt to break it (the pot). Whosever that behaves in such a way is regarded as an ingrate who can’t be trusted by anybody for anything again, even his present fair weather friends and sycophants that presently surround him.


From religion perspective, it’s even in the bible. ‘The liberal soul shall be made fat’. Our God Almighty is also delighted to those who appreciate Him. When He is appreciated, He gives more. This is the reason in our prayers, thanking Him comes first, followed by prayer of forgiveness of our sins after which we ask for more grace.


Back to the main issue, none of these sycophants presently queuing behind Governor Fubara was there when former Governor Wike and he struck the deal that produced him as the governor. I could vividly remember during the Church Thanksgiving where ex-Governor of Ekiti, HE Ayodele Fayose told Governor Fubara point-blank that he should not endeavour to engage his benefactor on any issue considering the stubborn nature of the latter, if he wants the peace to reign. This golden piece of advice went viral. But this piece of advice from ex-governor Fayose went on deaf ears. Impliedly, the sitting governor had añ intent to ‘deal with’ his benefactor upon getting into office. In fact, the actions of Governor Fubara have shown that he is not happy that HE Wike made the ministerial list. Why? If he were not considered, it would’ve been easier for him to decimate him. If Governor Fubara is of the thought that some governors in the South South region had done similar thing against their benefactors and went scot free, he is deceiving himself and may have himself blamed when the chips are down. The timing, control of the State House of Assembly, relationship of the benefactor with the government at the centre etc are among the variables that determined who won the battle in those States (Akwa Ibom and Edo precisely). Looking at all the factors mentioned here, no sane person will advise Governor Fubara to continue with this battle not only for the purpose of saving his job but majorly to give people good governance and give peace a chance in one of the hitherto most peaceful states in the Southern region, and Nigeria by extension.


No matter how he (Fubara) may be moving closer to President Tinubu nowadays, it was his estranged boss that President Tinubu holds in high esteem owing to the role the G-5 Governors under his leadership played in the election that produced him as the president of the most populous nation on African continent. Besides, Jagaban has always been a godfather, especially in Lagos politics and has 100% control of the State House of Assembly. Jagaban will never tolerate disloyalty. In other words, I doubt if there’s any politician in Nigeria that values loyalty more than the president.


The president, as a father to all, had in the wake of the crisis, done all within his power to ensure peace and had since called the belligerent factions together with a view to brokering peace. He has given Governor Fubara a soft landing by prevailing on the Rivers State House of Assembly members to sheath their swords. But the unfolding events in the last few weeks now clearly demonstrate that the sitting governor is up to a game. As the age-long adage puts it, “When you see a little bird dancing in the middle of the pathway, its drummer is definitely in a nearby bush”. But when the crisis finally consumes him, these people will no longer be found behind him.


The fact that former Governor Wike is still in control of the Rivers State House of Assembly is enough for our man to go and meet with him and make peace with him in the best interest of the good people of Rivers State. They knew where and how they met immediately after his estranged boss anointed him as his successor. I knew a day never passed without him going to meet him (Wike) before his election. All these wild vituperations from him and his fair-weather friends will rather be aggravating his case instead of lessening it. He will simply be impeached and heaven will not fall. At least twice, he has threatened to resign as the governor of Rivers State. That’s not the solution!


Let’s learn to appreciate so that our hearts can be at complete rest!


Gbolahan Shine-Shine from Oyo State is a political analyst, public affairs commentator and lecturer.


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