Kinsmen of Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, have expressed their disapproval of the approach taken by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to address the ongoing political crisis in the state, citing concerns about a lack of democratic principles.
Operated under the banner of “Opobo Elder Statesmen 4 Sim,” Fubara’s kinsmen outrightly rejected the resolutions reached during the recent meeting held at the Presidential Villa in Abuja. Their disapproval stems from the perceived absence of a solid legal foundation within the agreement and the contentious debate over its legitimacy.
In a communique issued after an emergency meeting in Port Harcourt yesterday, the group emphasized that, within the constitutional framework, the President lacks the authority to interfere in a state’s internal affairs. The joint signatories of the communique included Alabo Reuben Mietamuno Saturday-Jaja, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the group, Chairman Alabo Edwin Cockeye Brown, and other executive council members.
The elders clarified that Tinubu’s role primarily revolves around overseeing federal appointees and does not extend to dictating terms to a governor. Emphasizing constitutional constraints, the communique asserted that the President’s agreement cannot override court rulings, especially those concerning legal proceedings such as impeachment or legislative matters.
The group challenged the directive to withdraw court cases, citing the constitutional provision that mandates vacant seats for legislators who defected without adhering to party division or merger protocols.
Furthermore, the communique strongly affirmed the recognition of only the members of the Edison Ehie-led House of Assembly as legitimate representatives, casting doubt on the legitimacy of the positions held by legislators who defected under Rt. Hon. Martin Amaewhule’s leadership.