Connect with us


Rivers Assembly Pushes For Fresh Elections Amid Political Crisis



Rivers Crisis: Parallel Sittings Expected In State House Of Assembly

The Rivers State House of Assembly, aligned with Governor Siminalayi Fubara, has officially requested that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) conduct elections to fill vacant legislative seats.

These seats were left unoccupied following the defection of 27 lawmakers to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

Sokari Goodboy, the current factional leader of the House, confirmed this development in a telephone interview on Friday.

Goodboy stated that the request to INEC was initiated under the former Speaker, Edison Ehie.

“We have already written to INEC when Edison Ehie was the Speaker,” he said. 

An anonymous source within INEC disclosed that while it is unclear if the commission has received the letter, any action on the matter would depend on court rulings.

The source stated that the issues surrounding the defection of the 27 lawmakers and the alleged vacancy declarations are still under judicial review.

Rivers State’s political scene has been rocky since Governor Fubara’s fallout with his predecessor, Nyesom Wike, now the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory. 

The rift reportedly began over disagreements on state finances and governance strategies.

In October 2023, tensions escalated when 27 Assembly members loyal to Wike, led by factional Speaker Martin Amaewhule, attempted to impeach Governor Fubara.

This was followed by the bombing of the State House of Assembly on October 31, 2023.

Subsequently, these lawmakers defected to the APC, declaring their intention in a session held at the damaged complex.

In response, Edison Ehie, representing the pro-Fubara faction, was elected Speaker by his loyalists and declared the seats of the defected lawmakers vacant. 

Ehie also announced their suspension and called for INEC to conduct fresh elections.

Following intervention by President Bola Tinubu, aimed at reconciling Fubara and Wike, Ehie resigned from the House.

This intervention resulted in an eight-point agenda, including the re-presentation of the budget to the Amaewhule-led House loyal to Wike.