by Umar Sani, Arewa Community, Rivers State
The matter has been concealed from the public and masqueraded as a fight on the loss of the Rivers state structure by the big masquerade. You wonder which structure is in contention, the Peoples Democratic Party, governance, traditional, or some other conventional invisible structure unfamiliar to the good people of Rivers State.
I have pondered and pontificated on what was the catalyst that culminated in the collapse of a three-month-old romance between a godfather and a godson to such an extent that the Rivers State House of Assembly will be in shambles courtesy of the detonation of a bomb while the whole of PortHarcourt was thrown into a state of pandemonium.
A governor whose demeanor is introverted suddenly was on the streets chanting Japanese banzai songs, addressing the youth, and exchanging pleasantries with the downtrodden must have been forced out of his cocoon. A popular saying goes thus” A toad does not run in the daytime for nothing either it is chasing something or something is chasing it”
The gist has it that a former commissioner of finance in Rivers State under Rt Hon Rotimi Amaechi Chamberlain Peterside was at the center of the storm.
Siminilaye Fubara is from the same area as Chamberlain Peterside who had also in his little way contributed immensely to his emergence as a Governor. When Sim observed the dwindling fortunes of the IGR of the state he invited the head of the Internal Revenue Service to find out the reasons for the state’s descent of its revenue potential. His findings were rattling, the head of the revenue service was reporting to the godfather instead of the Gov, who was directing him on how the monies were to be deployed. What amount should go to the revenue account, the state account, and other accounts? Sim could not stomach the rarity and therefore sought to correct the anomaly, he invited.
Chamberlain Peterside and an ICT expert to work with the revenue head to fashion out modalities for raising the state’s revenue status and getting it back to a better shape.
The involvement of Chamberlain Peterside is what amounted to tampering with the structure of the state. The introduction of those he referred to as Abuja politicians into his narrative as those influencing fubara is merely an anticipatory lie told in advance to forecast a likely occurrence so that it can be used as an instrument of blackmail.