Explainer: Why is Wike Interested in Rivers State’s Political Structure?

Explainer: Why is Wike Interested in Rivers State’s Political Structure?

Nyesom Wike, the minister of the federal capital territory and the former governor of Rivers state, has engaged his political successor, Siminalayi Fubara, in the battle of supremacy for the past three months.

Legit.ng journalist Bada Yusuf is an accomplished politics and current affairs editor, boasting over seven years of experience in journalism and writing.

The threat by the Rivers state house of assembly to remove Governor Fubara further fueled the tension in the state. President Bola Tinubu had to step into the situation to slow down the tension.

Nyesom Wike/Siminalayi Fubara/Bola Ahmed Tinubu/Presidency/Rivers state/APC/PDP
Reason Wike wants his political structure sustained Photo Credit: Nyesom Wike
Source: Twitter

Tinubu's intervention, however, generated negative reactions from some stakeholders, while many others shared dissenting views. But Governor Fubara has said nothing is too big to sacrifice for the state's peace.

On his part, Wike complained about the governor tampering with the political structure he left in the state, adding that no politician would tolerate Fubara's action in less than six months of handing it over to him.

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However, many are asking why Minister Wike wants to retain the state's structure. Below are some of the reasons:

Political relevance/godfatherism

Wike's quest to retain his political structure in Rivers state is a testament to his desire to remain relevant in the state's political scheme.

Just like every other politician, Wike did not just fight for relevance but retained his statute of godfatherism. He had bragged about how he bought the form for all the political office holders in the state, including Governor Fubara.

This could be one of the reasons he had 28 of the 32 lawmakers in his camp, even as the governor tried to rule them out.

Protect support base for Tinubu’s re-election in 2027

Every political observer understands that politicians have started campaigning for 2027. Thus, for Wike to sustain his ministerial position, he needed the structure to win the election for President Bola Tinubu in 2027.

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Rivers Crisis: 3 reasons why Wike may lose Rivers structure to Fubara

Wike, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), worked for President Tinubu during the 2023 presidential election after falling out with his party's leaders.

Surprisingly, the All Progressives Congress (APC) won the presidential election in Rivers State, and the PDP swept the presidential and senatorial elections in the state. A testament to Wike's political strength in the state.

Protect support base for his future presidential ambition

Another reason for fighting for the political structure in the state was to pursue his presidential ambition in the 2021 election.

Wike had worked to reposition the PDP after the 2019 election but lost the party's presidential ticket to Atiku Abubakar during the primary for the 2023 election.

The former Rivers governor hoped to get the vice presidential ticket if the PDP, but Atiku decided to pick Ifeanyi Okowa, the former governor of Delta state, above Wike, who has five governors of the party behind him.

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Wike also said he would not be contesting against President Tinubu, but that does not mean he would no longer contest for president. Either in the next eight or 16 years, the FCT minister can still push for his ambition.

Analyst reacts to Wike, Fubara's crisis

A political commentator who spoke with Legit.ng on the matter, Okanlawon Gaffar, commended Governor Fubara for taking the peace path.

According to Gaffar:

"Governor Fubara must be commended for taking the peace path. Godfatherism is a natural feature of politics in Nigeria. You can't shy away from it. If you can't beat them, you have to join them."

"Tinubu asks me to join APC": PDP chairman speaks on Wike, Fubara resolution

Legit.ng earlier reported that the PDP acting chairman in Rivers state, Chukwuma Aaron, has dismissed the claim that Governor Siminalayi Fubara signed President Bola Tinubu's eighth resolution under duress.

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Wike sends strong message to Rivers residents over rift with Fubara: "Don’t get involved"

Aaron, while addressing anti-Nyesom Wike protesters, said the resolution was agreed upon and signed by major stakeholders in the state, including Governor Fubara and him.

David Briggs, a former commissioner in the state, claimed he was part of the meeting, and Tinubu only brought the written document for Fubara to sign.

Source: Legit.ng

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Bada Yusuf (Politics and Current Affairs Editor) Yusuf Amoo Bada is an accomplished politics and current affairs editor, boasting over 7 years of experience in journalism and writing. He is a graduate of OAU, and holds Diploma in Mass Comm. and BA in Literature in English. He has obtained certificates in Leadership and received the "Certificate for Breakthrough of the Year 2022" in recognition of his great performance during his first year at Legit.ng. Worked as Editor with OperaNews. Contact: bada.yusuf.amoo@corp.legit.ng or call 08161717844