Wike, Fubara feud can destroy Niger Delta, Jonathan warns

Former President Goodluck Jonathan has urged Rivers state Governor Siminalayi Fubara and his predecessor who is also the FCT minister,  Nyesom Wike, to work together for the good of the people of Rivers state.

Jonathan spoke Monday during the flag-off of Trans-Kalabari Road in Obio/Akpor local government area of the state, saying the political tension in the state was getting worrisome.

He applauded Fubara for his vision, commitment and courage to take up the construction of such road with numerous benefits of making movement easy, enhancing response time to security issues, promoting integration and economic growth.

“When I was asked to come and flag off this project, I felt that it is only a person who has vision, and the commitment to develop his people that can do this.

“Your Excellency let me commend you for your vision and the courage to start this project. In fact, it is not going to be a tea party. If you must develop a nation, region or state, there are critical elements that count. These are good road network, airport, rail and water transport systems as well as security,” he said. 

The former president said providing these enablers would engender development in the state.

…Call for truce  

While alluding to the political tension in the state, Jonathan underscored the need for the outgoing governors and incoming ones to work together in the interest of the citizenry.

“In this case of Rivers, Minister Nyesom Wike and Governor Siminalayi Fubara must work together for the development of the land and the people of Rivers state. The tension will not help us.

“Rivers State is very critical in this country. Rivers State is the heart of the Niger Delta. If Rivers State is destabilized, the whole Niger Delta will be destabilized, and it will not end within the Niger Delta alone because I am from this part of the country, and I know how the system works. We don’t want any crisis in Rivers State…

“Leaders must know that nobody takes 100 percent. You must learn the principle of give and take. So, our political actors must work together if you love Rivers people. 

“And, I join the leaders of Rivers State and well-meaning Nigerians who have been calling for truce, who have been calling for ceasefire, to also re-emphasize that there is the need for a ceasefire. Let us do things that will rather project this State positively,” the former president further pleaded.

Speaking further on the need for plea, he said: “There is this common saying that when two elephants fight, the grass suffers. Both the Governor and the Minister are young people, very young people but they are powerful, and if you continue to fight, Rivers people will suffer. We don’t want the Rivers people to suffer.

“So, we are calling on them to embrace themselves. One hand does not clap. It takes two hands to clap. So, we want them to work together for the collective interest of Rivers people. 

“Whatever has happened has passed. Let us move to a new phase for the interest of the state, for the interest of the Niger Delta, and indeed, the interest of the country.”

…Fubara remarks

In his speech, Governor Fubara assured of his administration’s determination to deliver the Trans-Kalabari Road project to stimulate socio-economic activities in benefiting rural communities for overall development of the state.

The governor said: “When we went for campaign in the three local government areas of Kalabari Kingdom, we promised you that if you give us your votes and we succeed, we will embark on the Trans-Kalabari Road.

“And that is what we have come to do today. We are a government, when we make promise, we keep our promises.

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