Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, says it is unconstitutional for the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to shift his constitutional responsibility of securing lives and property of Nigerians to state governors.
The governor, in a statement by his media aide, Kelvin Ebiri, said the President is the Commander- In-Chief of the Armed Forces and cannot declare that governors are in charge of security in their respective states.
Wike, who spoke at the inauguration of the 21-kilometre Odufor-Akpoku-Umuoye Road in the Etche Local Government Area of the state on Tuesday, said such a position suggested that the All Progressives Congress-led Federal Government lacked strategies on how to tackle insecurity in the country.
He stated, “Mr President, you are the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. You appoint Inspector General of Police. You appoint the Chief of Army Staff, Chief of Naval Staff, the commissioners of police, the Director of Department of State Services and other heads of security.
“Which one do we appoint? How can people appointed by Mr. President be under me?”
“It is not only to borrow money for Nigeria that you’re in charge. You must, also, be in charge of other things including security. Who signed order 10? Is it the governors? It is not when things are going bad concerning security, and you say you’re not in charge, and it becomes governors’ responsibility,” he stated.
Wike advised the APC-led Federal Government to agree that it could no longer fulfil promises made to Nigerians.
The governor said Nigerians should begin to compare the performances of the Peoples Democratic Party governors with their APC counterparts.
He said, “Mr President was short of calling names of those governors who run to Aso Rock when they are supposed to stay in their states to see the needs of their states and people.
“Mr President should have come out openly and said, ‘my APC governors, stop worrying me. Go back to your states and do your work.’ On that, I support him.
“Thank God, Mr President knows that I am not one of those that go to visit him over one problem or the other. I, as the governor of Rivers under the PDP, you’ll never find me there,” Wike said.
Former Senate President, Senator David Mark, who performed the inauguration of the road, noted the excitement on the faces of residents who were directly impacted by the project.
He said, “I told him I’ll be here because he loves his people. Politics and democracy is not about enriching one or two persons within a community. The Odufor-Akpoku-Umuoye Road is project that will outlive everybody in this place. The legacy you’re leaving behind, Rivers people will not forget you. They will defend you, they’ll protect you and they will stand by you always.
Providing the description of the project, Rivers State Commissioner for Works, Elloka Tasie-Amadi, said Odufor-Akpoku-Umuoye Road connects part of Etcheland to Omerelu, Apani and Omademe communities in neighbouring Ikwerre Local Government Area, and onwards to Imo State. ,,