Governor Siminalayi Fubara has made an accusation that certain police officers attempted to shoot and kill him as he was en route to inspect the damaged Rivers State House of Assembly complex on Monday morning. Fubara, accompanied by a group of young people during his visit to the complex on Monday, expressed his disappointment at the endeavor by disgruntled individuals to forcibly seize control of the assembly.
He also decried the burning of parts of the vast Assembly complex, emphasizing that it had been constructed using taxpayers’ money. Additionally, he refuted allegations that he had orchestrated the attack on the complex to thwart the plot to impeach him.
In a statement signed by Boniface Onyedi, his Senior Special Assistant, the Governor stated, “The truth is that everyone who knows me is aware that I am a peace-loving individual. Even if I were aware of a plot to impeach me for any reason, I would never be involved in such destruction. I am concerned that a facility built with taxpayers’ money is being destroyed for selfish reasons just to appease someone. From what I have witnessed, even the security is compromised because they were directly shooting at me. The Deputy Commissioner of Police (DC Operations) was shooting at me.”
Governor Fubara declared any unlawful legislative actions taken by certain members who purportedly held a plenary session to be null and void and stated, “Let it be on record that whoever masterminded the attack on the assembly is trying to divert attention.”
Addressing the youth of Rivers, Governor Fubara praised them for standing up to protect the interests of Rivers State and emphasized that he is not afraid of impeachment, but any such action must be thoroughly explained and justified. He said, “If Siminalayi Fubara is impeached, I won’t be the first, nor will I be the last. But what is important is that any attempt that is not justified will be resisted. Let them come out and tell Rivers people the offense that I have committed to warrant impeachment. But my happiness this morning is that the people of Rivers State, represented by everyone here, are with us. I can go home and sleep. Let me assure Rivers people that we will continue to defend them, protect you, and ensure that they will enjoy the dividends of democracy.”
Earlier, the lawmakers led by Speaker Martin Amaewhule initiated impeachment proceedings against the Governor. The motion for the impeachment notice was presented by Sylvanus Nwankwo, the legislator representing Omuma State constituency, who stated that 24 members of the House had signed the impeachment notice. The Speaker, Amaewhule, directed the House Clerk to forward the notice to the Governor in accordance with Section 188 of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) for the Governor’s response.
Amaewhule accused the Government House and the Leader of the House, Edison Ehie, of orchestrating the bombing of the Assembly Complex the previous night. Members of the house suspended indefinitely include Edison Ehie, Oko Jumbo, Goodboy Sokari, and Adolphus Orubeme according to the standing order of the House.
In response to the situation, Chijioke Ihunwo, Chairman of the National Youth Council of Nigeria (NYCN), declared that Rivers youths would support Fubara because he represents the younger generation and cannot be removed. He emphasized that they would resist any attempt to remove the Governor.
Dr. Lelonu Nwibibasa, the Spokesman of the PDP Presidential Campaign Council and Atiku Abubakar campaign, called on Rivers people to unite and save the state from being controlled by one person to the detriment of the people.
Former Governor of the State Rufus Ada George called for a peaceful and amicable resolution of the crisis, urging all parties involved to seek a quick resolution to prevent potential violence. He also called on the police and other security agencies to deploy personnel to flashpoints to maintain peace.
Pictures of Governor Fubara’s visit to the burnt Chambers of Rivers Assembly and his address to the top officers of the Rivers State Police Command at the Assembly opposite the Police Command headquarters are also available.