The crisis in Rivers State worsened Tuesday as the supporters of the minister of State for Education, Nyeson Wike stoned the convoy of Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, at the Omagwa International Airport, Port Harcourt.
The Governors of Jigawa, Adamawa, Kano and Niger State (Sule Lamido, Murtala Nyako, Rabiu Kwakwanso and Babangida Aliu respectively), were also on that convoy when Wike’s supporters, who had stormed the VIP area of the airport very early in the morning in a show of anger stoned the convoy and the supporters of Amaechi, who had also come to show solidarity to the Governor.
They came as People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Governors, and commended the House of Representatives in the way they handled the state House of Assembly crisis, and the Senate committee on the crisis for doing a thorough job.
The visiting governors in a communiqué said: “With the way the police is being used, we do not see the need for state governments to fund an antagonistic police, and may be forced to reconsider our position on the financial contribution of the states towards the funding of the Nigeria Police.
“Arising from the action of the police, and Mr. Joseph Mbu in Rivers State, the call for state police as a constitutional necessity has become a necessity.
“We note that events in Rivers State have again brought to the fore the question of true federalism and the need for institutions derived from constitutions be allowed to function without undue interference. As federating units, we must be allowed the space to guarantee our people sustainable development as provided by the constitution.
“We acknowledge the great work of Governor Amaechi and his team is doing in Rivers State and commends his maturity and calm even in the face of apparent persecution.
“We join well-meaning Nigerians to call on all political actors to diffuse tension and stop all actions capable of overheating the polity and derailing our nascent democracy. We must all work together to build one united and indivisible nation and strengthen our democracy.
“We are pleased to notice the peaceful atmosphere in town and that people in the state are going about their normal businesses, and that the Governor and the government are in charge. This is especially reassuring as opposed to the organized protest by a handful of protest by a handful of persons at the Port Harcourt airport when we arrived.
“Having interacted with our colleagues and other persons, we are shocked at the role of the police in Rivers State, and condemn its clear partisanship in the show of shame that took place at the Rivers State House of Assembly.
“As chief executives of our states who have sworn to protect lives and properties in our various states, we are particularly troubled by the developments in Rivers State.
“We commend the House of Representatives for its proactive leadership in the crisis, and appreciate the Senate committee’s thoroughness in addressing the matter.
“We wish to call the Inspector General of Police to hearken to the voice of reason and immediately redeploy and discipline commissioner Mbu. His action smirks of unprofessionalism and political partisanship which is unbecoming of his office.”