That Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers state and Nigeria's First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan are at loggerheads is no longer news. What political watchers have continued to ask is when did their disagreements really started?
Amaechi who is known for his outspokenness and bluntness, must have made the first lady upset the day she visited her community, Okirika in Rivers state.
"Mama Peace", as she is fondly called by her admirers, was called upon by her kinsmen to resuce them after Amaechi went on a demolition spree in the riverine community known for having so many shanties. Amaechi had embarked on an aggressive re-structuring in order to give the state a major uplift. The governor had warned before the commencement of the demolition exercise that his government will spare no one in its effort to re-model the state.
On the day the first lady answered the clarion call of her kinsmen, as it is customary in government circles, both Amaechi and his wife, Judith, were on hand to welcome Mrs. Jonathan at the airport and also accompany her to the demolition site.
On getting to the site, the governor took time to explain to Mrs. Jonathan why the demolitions were been carried out and even went ahead to say the demolitions will continue. Irked by Amaechi's statement, the first lady stunned everyone at the gathering when she reportedly yanked a microphone out of his hands and lambasted him for being insensitive to the plight of the people.
Governor Amaechi was said to have left the scene immediately after the first lady's tongue-lashing. That singular act, by the first lady had dug a wedge in the relationship of the two personalities who before then enjoyed a chummy relationship.
Today, there is no love lost between the two Rivers citizens. Accusations and counter-accusations have been the order of the day and President Goodluck Jonathan seem helpless to wade into the matter as he himself has had his own fair share of confrontations with Amaechi.
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One can only wish that they resolve their differences for the good of their state and indeed for the progress, unity and peace of Nigeria in general. Below are photos taken at different fora when Governor Amaechi and Dame Jonathan were politically in-separable:
Meanwhile, you need to read these 5 feisty quotes from Mrs Jonathan on General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) and the All Progressives congress.