Okoi Obono Obla
Governor Wike’s Arrogance and Meddlesomeness
State Governors are the leaders of the federating units of the Federation. They are elected by their people and therefore answerable only to their people. If a State Governor is not doing, it is left for his people to deal with it. It is not the business of another state to begin to tell us that a particular is not doing well.
The States are independent and autonomous as long as they operate within the confines of their competencies or spheres of authority as delineated by the Constitution.
The Governors are not answerable to the federal authorities as long as they operate within their confines of governmental powers prescribed by the Constitution.
The States are co-equal in everything. No one State is bigger than the other, no longer how big or populated or wealthier it is.
Rivers State is just a State as Cross River State.
It may have oil wealth or more wealthier than Cross River State, but it is not more important than Cross River State,
I have concluded that some Governors from Rivers State always think that they can dictate who gets what and how in Cross River State.
You can imagine the meddlesomeness of Governor Wike of Rivers State in the affairs of Cross River State. He talks down to our Governor in a very uncouth, disrespectful, and condescending manner unbecoming of a gentleman of his status.
It is not about Governor Ben Ayade; it is about our pride as a people. When we were in Eastern Nigeria, we were never under the Rivers province’s thumb (present Bayelsa and Rivers State.
The people of the then Calabar/Ogoja provinces (present Akwa Ibom and the Cross Rivers States) were indeed at the driving seat of the quest to create the Calabar Ogoja Rivers State from the defunct Eastern Region of Nigeria.
Our leaders were at the helm of the COR State Movement that culminated in the creation of the defunct South Eastern and the Rivers States, respectively, in 1967 out of Nigeria’s former Eastern Region. Leaders started everything about the beginning of the agitation to create the Calabar Ogoja Rivers State movement of Nigeria’s defunct Eastern region from the present Akwa Ibom and the Cross River States.
It all began on the floor of the Eastern Nigeria House of Assembly in Enugu. The Leader of Governor Busines (premier as they called). Under the 1951 Macpherson’s Constitution,) was Professor Eyo Ita. Then Dr. NNamdi Azikiwie lost his ambition to be the Leader of Busines in the defunct Western Region of Nigeria on the floor of the defunct Western Nigeria House of Assembly when all the NCNC members elected under the platform of the Party defected to join the Action Group party of Chief Obafemi Awolowo on alleged ethnic grounds because they did not want Dr. Azikiwe from Eastern Nigeria to be the Premier of Western Nigeria.
An angry Dr. Azikiwe left Western Nigeria to return to his home region, Eastern Nigeria. When he returned, NCNC leaders pressured Professor Eyo Ita to resign from his position as Leader of Government Business for Dr. Azikiwie to occur. This apparent insensitivity by the leadership of NCNC piqued legislators (leaders) from the then Calabar Ogoja and Rivers Provinces of the Eastern Region in the Eastern House of Assembly to resign en-mass from NCNC, to form their Party known as National Independent Party, under the leadership of Dr. Okoi Arikpo (SAN). They quickly aligned with Action Group to begin the agitation to create the Calabar Ogoja Rivers State Movement.
The leaders of the Calabar Ogoja Rivers Movement were Honourable Justice Udo Udoma (from Ikot Abasi, Akwa Ibom State), and Dr. Okoi Arikpo (SAN) (from Cross River State). Honorable Justice Udo Udoma was the President-General of the Movement (COR), while Dr. Okoi Arikpo (SAN) was the Secretary-General of the Calabar Ogoja Rivers State movement.
The other day the same Governor Wike was insulting and hurling abuses on Senator Godswill Akpabio, Honorable Minister of Niger Delta Affairs; today, it is Governor Ben Ayade. Governor Wike and politicians from Rivers State should stop insulting our leaders. Enough is enough. He should also desist from meddling in our affairs.
*Okoi Obono Obla, a lawyer, sent this from Calabar