Abuja, Dec. 14, 2023 (NAN) A Coalition of Rivers leaders of thought, has called for peace and de-escalation of political tension in the state to create an enabling environment for the people to enjoy dividends of democracy.
This is contained in a statement jointly signed the Convener, Chief Sunnie Chukwumele Fosha and Secretary, Mr Josiah Onoriode and made available to the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Abuja.
” It has become necessary for the coalition to continue to cry for peace in the face of the heinous political conflict that is threatening to engulf the state.
“We lend our voice and contribute to issues based on conviction. We also act as vanguards to engage in agenda setting, feedbacks, propagation and promotion of good governance.
“We are not happy with the ugly political developments in the state culminating in the threat of impeachment of the Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara and the factionalisation of the state Legislators.
“Also, the alleged gun attack on one of the Factional speakers of the Rivers State House of Assembly has put our dear state in bad light, which is also bad enough to distract the governor,” it said.
The coalition added:“No meaningful governance can take place in the state under the prevailing unhealthy political atmosphere with its attendant bloody kind explosive nature.
“We therefore call for peace, love and de-escalation of the political tension, squabbles and animosities to allow for peaceful environment to facilitate the effective delivery of dividends of democracy to the people.
“This is very important for the growth and development of Rivers and for her people to experience good governance and prosperity.”
It said that governance in the state was being distracted, saying that this would negatively impact on the citizenry.
“With such distraction, the desired dividends of governance will be denied the good people of Rivers.
“And this is in counter to the spirit of section 14, sub-section 2(b) of the 1999 Constitution as amended, which expressly states that the security and welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government.
“This cannot be achieved if the governor of the state is continuously and deliberately distracted from concentrating in the discharge of his constitutional mandate to the peoples and citizens of Rivers.
“It is regrettable that the prevailing situation appears to be giving impetus to rising cases of criminality, occasioning armed attacks and killings in the state.”
“For example, the armed attack on the residence of Rep. Edison Ehie, the factional speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, and even killings by gun attacks in parts of the state.
“If the citizens do not rally support for the State to experience peaceful atmosphere for good governance, security and life of the people, we may be on the road to Somalia”.
The coalition said that the prevailing situation paint a gloomy picture as it scared and repel investments and investors; and all the seen efforts of the governor and his government would become exercise in futility.
“We encourage the governor to declare a state of emergency on critical areas that deal with UN Millennium Development Goals like Education, Health, Eradication of poverty and hunger, water and sanitation, climate action, peace, etc.
” We urged Fubara to also pay attention to other critical aspects of the state economy like the Blue Economy, Agriculture, employment of teachers, and management of pensioners and welfare of the Aged.
“We call on all men and women of goodwill to continue to pray for the state and rally round her and the government to navigate through these trying and tough times.
“More than any resource today, Rivers needs peace and Stability,’’ it said. (NAN)