Politics

Fubara

  • Tasks Reps on Fairness, Justice

From Tony John, Port Harcourt

Rivers State Governor Siminalayi Fubara has said that the pressure mounted by the political crisis has been weathered sufficiently, giving way for his administration to provide focused leadership and governance to the people of the State.

Governor Fubara made the assertion when he hosted on a courtesy visit, members of the House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions, led by its Chairman, Mike Etaba, at Government House in Port Harcourt on Saturday night.

The governor declared that as long as his administration and the Rivers people he is leading are concerned, there is no more political issue of note.

Governor Fubara, making reference to a movie he had seen a long time ago, explained how the pressure from the unwarranted political crisis served as an enabler to strengthen his commitment to service that is now impacting lives positively.

He said: “As far as we are concerned, there are no political issues. I had seen a movie many years ago, entitled, ‘Devil’s Advocate.’ I believe some of you must have seen that movie too.

“One of the starring characters: Al Pacino said, that pressure makes some people retreat or fail, and to others, it makes them become focused on succeeding. We have chosen to be focused under this pressure.

“That is why we are moving ahead. That is why we are making a positive impact on the lives of our people. Governance is about the people. It is not about self.

“Governance is about touching the core needs of those people we are leading, and by the special grace of God, we are doing it.”

Governor Fubara pointed to the empowerment of about 3,066 Micro, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (MSMEs) when he flagged off the N4 billion single-digit loan scheme in conjunction with the Bank of Industry (BOI) Limited on Friday, as one way his administration is improving the socio-economic dynamics of the State.

“Yesterday, by the special grace of God, we observed the credit line of over 3,066 persons empowered. You can imagine what that will do for the economy of the masses and the State.

“That is touching the lives of our people. It is not supporting them for selfish reasons. It is not giving a contract because I want somebody to fight somebody in my community. No. This is empowering the economy of the masses and the State.

“Our focus is that, no matter what anybody is doing anywhere, we are not going to lose focus. We want to leave here better than we had met it. And we want to also leave here without fear of anything.”

Governor Fubara said, it is more desirable for a public leader to relish in the accolades from the majority of the people, who by exploring the conducive climate that is provided, could feed themselves and pay school fees for their children.

The governor emphatically said: “That is what we want to hear, so that when before our children, our names are mentioned when we are no more, they will say: ‘That man is a good man’.

“We will not oppress anybody. We will not force anybody against their will. We will not intimidate anybody, because intimidation has a time when it expires.

“When the time of intimidation expires, even as recorded of Pharaoh in the Bible, who intimidated the children of Israel, but it got to a time that the intimidation no longer worked.

 

“So, any bad thing that has a beginning, will have an end. So, that is why I said we don’t have any problem. We have put that crisis behind us. We are looking ahead.”

 

Governor Fubara, who reiterated that Rivers State is peaceful, said it takes a peaceful leader to bring about such an aura of peace to the State and its people.

The governor told his guests to dismiss the negative social media reports that tended to portray the State as a place immersed in uncontrollable violence and juxtapose it with what they have personally witnessed so that they can be better ambassadors of the state.

“Leadership and respect in leadership is not earned by force. It is your style that brings respect and love. And what we are doing is to respect our people, and in turn, our people are giving us that support for leadership.

 

“So, I am happy that you are here, and when you go back, tell others your own side of the story: that Rivers State is moving forward. Forget about what you see on social media, there is progress everywhere here. There is light everywhere.”

Governor Fubara further told the committee members to note that it is normal for people to seek redress when they feel that their rights have been trampled upon.

But, he advised that when such complaints come to them, they should be thorough with their investigation, be fair and make their resolutions devoid of bias.

He said: “Some of these people who write these petitions to you, I can say it, some of them are not even genuine. They believe that it is also a way to extort money from most of these companies that are doing business around us.

“So, I will urge you to do your investigation properly and let your finding be a result of proper and diligent investigation.”

Governor Fubara also said: “You mentioned something about the petition against Indorama Petrochemical and Fertiliser Company Limited, we are already aware of it.

“Funny enough, the Indorama case was even reported by Indorama itself. It is unfortunate that a particular person who got the privileged information went behind to use that information against the company.

“I just need to let you know that, just in case when you will be treating the case, you could factor this information. Those people can’t come to us because they know we will look at them in the face, and tell them the truth.

“Ordinarily, they ought to have come to us. They need to make the complaint first to the State Ministry of Environment before going ahead.

“So, you can see the kind of society that we find ourselves in. But, God has placed you in this position today. It is for a purpose. So, use it to defend the oppressed people possibly in the course of justice. Defend them. Defend what is right. When it is wrong, say it with boldness.”

 

In his address, the leader of the delegation and Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Public Petitions, Mike Etaba, explained that they came into Port Harcourt on the basis of a petition that is before the House and referred to the Committee.

He mentioned the petitioner as “Bridge Gap Initiative”, a non-governmental organisation (NGO), in respect to some of the companies operating in the Trans-Amadi Industrial Layout of Rivers State.

He said: “These companies are Schlumberger, Halliburton, Coca Cola and International Breweries. We have met with these companies that were able to oblige us their time.

“We went round to look at the issues that made us to come, especially the pollution of the water around Oginigba River. The companies were accused of discharging dangerous effluent into the river and also polluting the environment. That is the reason we came, and we have finished our assignment.”

Etaba used the opportunity to commend Governor Fubara on how he had handled the political crisis that erupted in the State, praising him for not allowing it to degenerate into violent physical clashes.

He said: “Because you see, the battle of leadership comes from God Almighty. Nobody gives power. Power comes from God. If God uses any man to give you power, and that man arrogates power to himself, that man will be doing himself a disservice.

“So far, you have carried yourself as a man that has wisdom, and dignity, and you are doing well. Your Excellency, don’t be distracted, what you owe dearly is to hold on to God strongly.

“The Lord is your strength, and you will succeed in every decision that you take. Ask Him for wisdom, He will direct you.”

He pledged the committee’s support and urged all people of goodwill in the State to rally support and remain strong in their tenacious loyalty to the governor to enable him to succeed in delivering good governance and quality leadership to Rivers people.

The post Fubara first appeared on Nigeria Newspapers Online.