Wike, Fubara should sheathe their swords —Patience Jonathan

Patience Jonathan, wife of former President Goodluck Jonathan, has urged the warring parties in Rivers state to give peace a chance.


The former first lady spoke on Thursday at a colloquium organised to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations (NIPR).


She delivered a speech on ‘Public relations, value reorientation, and economic transformation’.


Referring to the Rivers LGA crisis, the former first lady said it is a recipe for anarchy for elected officials to want to stay in office beyond the constitutional limit.


 “Let me at this point plead that the election has come and gone, and now it is time for governance,” Patience said.


“As a peace advocate, I would like to call on the warring parties in Rivers state because it is my state and it is where I am quite interested.


“So, whatever happens there concerns me, knowing fully well that no development can take place in an atmosphere of chaos.


 “As a political officeholder, remember that power is transient. It will end someday. Therefore, holding on to power after the expiration of your tenure is an invitation to violence and anarchy.”



Commenting on the aftermath of the 2015 presidential election, Patience said she did not urge her husband to stay in office after he lost the poll.


She said Jonathan “willingly relinquished without a fight,”  adding that the former president has become a model for democracy due to his actions.


 “When we failed the election, I was with him (Jonathan). We were in the room when we were told you had lost. I did not whisper to him that he must stay because we will shed blood,” she said.



In the last few months, Siminalayi Fubara, governor of Rivers, and his predecessor, Nyesom Wike, have been at loggerheads over political control of the state.


The Rivers assembly has been polarised into two factions as a result of the crisis. The Victor Jumbo-led faction is loyal to Fubara, while the Amaewhule-led faction is loyal to Wike.


The two factions are currently battling in court, seeking to know who has the legal authority to be recognised as the state parliament.


Recently, a crisis also broke out in the 23 LGA secretariats of the state after elected chairpersons, loyal to Wike, refused to vacate their offices after the expiration of their tenure.


Fubara had appointed caretaker committees to oversee the affairs of the local governments.

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