Wike regrets politicisation of nation’s security, preaches against tribalism

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Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State expressed regrets over the alleged politicisation of the nation’s security system, noting that the development was affecting the fight against insecurity.

 

The governor also assured that he would continue to conduct the affairs of the state in such a manner that would not undermine the interest of any ethnic group resident in the state, urging leaders to live above tribalism.

Wike spoke yesterday in Government House Port Harcourt when he played host to leaders of Northern Elders Forum (NEF) led by its Chairman, Prof. Ango-Abdullahi, who was in the State to meet with their people on the aftermath of the EndSARS protest that was hijacked by the proscribed Indigenous People Organisation of Biafra, IPOB, in the state.

Speaking, Governor Wike said he had raised alarm against the danger of insecurity after cultists killed over 100 persons on a particular Christmas’ eve in Ogba-Egbema-Ndoni Local government of the State, but, regretted that FG politicised it.

The governor while recalling how FSARS brutality against Rivers People was also ignored said that even the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, had issued a report that indicted the FSARS commander in the state, but instead of addressing the issues, the erring officer was rewarded and promoted.

Wike said: “The primary responsibility of every government is to make sure that life and property are being protected. When that is lost, then there is nothing like governance again.

“But it appears there is a leadership pandemic like you said. If truly leadership is serious, if we don’t politicise the issue of security, we won’t have been where we are today. God has made it possible for us to be part of one country, which means where you come from should not be a factor to move this country forward.”

Wike, who commended the leaders for the visit, said it was sad that people would do the wrong and dubiously tie any effort made to correct them to politics and ethnic bias just to deepen the divide among Nigerians.

He said: “The EndSARS protest was very peaceful in Rivers state. Oyigbo Local Government is one of the biggest in terms of population in the state. Miscreants woke up one morning because people are doing EndSARS protest and began to kill innocent people. They burnt down police stations, killed police officers and soldiers, and destroyed courts.

“When you say what you’re done is wrong, we can’t allow it, they say you’re against a particular ethnic group. How can that be? That action almost led to big violence between this group and that group. I am the governor of the state, how can I allow my state to be a centre of war? That can’t happen.

“Nobody can sack anybody here. Everybody has the right to live in the state. But no group can say it is their place. I won’t allow that. We also have Rivers people who are living outside. So, I can assure you that I will not do anything that will not be fair to any ethnic group.”

However, the Chairman of the Northern Elders Forum, Prof Ango Abdullahi, said the visit was to ascertain facts of what happened in the state during the END SARS protest.

He expressed satisfaction with actions the governor took, adding that the kind of empathy, sympathy, and care that Wike has shown as a leader was worthy of emulation.

Abdullahi said: “There is no doubt in my mind that this perhaps can be explained by history. The greatest history in terms of the political relationship between the people of the North and the Southern part of the country can always be found deeply rooted here in the Niger Delta area.

“We, like on behalf, not only on behalf of Northern Elders Forum but on behalf of Northern community world over, we thank you very sincerely for what we have heard and indeed what I have seen in terms of what you have been able to do to help ameliorate some of the challenges and difficulties faced by our brothers living here.”

Abdullahi said if the harmonious coexistence between Rivers people and Northerners living in the State could be replicated all over the country, then, the country will be a peaceful place for all.


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