The infra-dig dramatised at the Rivers state House of Assembly, as captured by local and foreign media, has become a cause for concern among Nigerians. The horrific spectacle, to us at the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC), is a clear manifestation of the leadership deficit at the Nation’s presidency.
The cause of the fracas was that on Tuesday, July 9, 2013, a group of five legislators- led by Mr. Evans Babakaya Bipialaka- sat (in an inquorate manner) ahead of the twenty-seven other house members, with the sole purpose of impeaching the incumbent Speaker, Mr. Otelemaba Amachree. Apparently, as a way of executing this nefarious act, the group of five procured another mace that was different from what was in the custody of the incumbent speaker of the House of Assembly.
As a Party, we have noted that this shameless act, which bears all the trappings of the executive recklessness and impunity embedded in the Nation’s presidency, had been rumoured for more than three months ago as being the final solution in the war of attrition between President Goodluck Jonathan and the Rivers state Governor, Mr Rotimi Amaechi. Despite the denials of the President’s media aides, who have perfected unscrupulous mendacious posturing, we believe very strongly that the Presidency is at the epicenter of the current security challenges in Rivers state.
We have noted the demeanour of Mr. Joseph Mbu, the Commissioner of Police in Rivers state, which the House of Representatives agreed, is unbecoming of a patriotic Police officer. We have also noted that the tumultuous entry of the First lady Patience Jonathan into Port-Harcourt in June was for the wedding of Mr. Evans Babakaya Bipialaka, the leader of this group of five. We noted the suspicious acquiescence by the Rivers state chapter of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) for the infamy done by the group of five. Unfortunately, the situation in Rivers state has degenerated since the formal takeover of the state Assembly functions by the House of Representatives. The Police reportedly fired tear gas canisters into the Government House. We also learnt that the security details for the governor have been withdrawn! These are pointers to anarchy in the State.
The relevant questions to be asked are:
§ Did the group of five legislators have the legitimacy (under the Nation’s extant law) to sit on Tuesday, July 9, 2013?
§ If they acted outside the law, should legal proceedings not be commenced against them as a way of punishing this execrable villainy, thereby strengthening the Nation’s jurisprudence?
§ Should the Inspector-General of Police (IGP), Mr. Mohammed Abubakar, continue to allow Mr. Joseph Mbu function as the State commissioner of Police with the documented show of insubordination against the state governor?
§ Is the President’s polarizing content of the debacle in Rivers state not a manifestation of his undesirable leadership style?
As a Party, we know that Nigeria is not a Monarchy, where Statehood is synonymous with the person of the holder of Executive Authority. The President, through subterranean means, had unduly increased the entropy level of the Political firmament in Rivers state for self-conceit. This, we believe, is unbecoming of a statesman. The National Assembly has the responsibility to investigate the President in the Rivers state saga. If found culpable, he should be impeached forthwith!
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Rotimi Fashakin (Engr.)
National Publicity Secretary, CPC.
(Thursday, July 11, 2013).