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Fubara orders LG heads to take charge of 23 council areas

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There is tension in Rivers State following Governor Siminalayi Fubara’s directive for Heads of Local Government Administration to immediately take charge of the 23 council areas.

This announcement came after the expiration of the three-year term of the elected local government chairmen, vice chairmen, and councillors on June 17.

In a statewide broadcast from Government House, Port Harcourt, on Tuesday morning, Governor Fubara addressed the citizens.

He said, “My fellow Rivers people, I come before you today with immense gratitude and heartfelt appreciation for your unwavering support to me and my administration.”

He urged everyone to reflect on their collective sacrifices for peace and prosperity in Rivers State and Nigeria. He expressed hope for continued peace and harmony. “Together, we have achieved milestones in different sectors of our economy which include infrastructure, health, education, workers’ welfare, improved service delivery, agriculture, and social welfare,” Fubara said.

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The governor thanked the outgoing local government leaders for their dedication and service. “On behalf of the Government and the people of Rivers State, I thank you all for your sacrifices, and commend your commitment to public service and our dear Rivers State. I congratulate you all for the successful completion of your tenure and wish you well in your future endeavours,” he stated.

Fubara directed HLGAs to take over leadership in their respective areas. “Heads of Local Government Administration are hereby directed to immediately take charge of the Councils with renewed vigor and readiness to serve and await further directives as we navigate towards even greater accomplishments together,” he ordered.

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He assured the citizens of continued development and welfare services. “We shall continue to defend you, provide infrastructural development, sound healthcare delivery, quality education, and undiluted welfare service packages for all our people and workers.”

Despite the governor’s directives, there is resistance from the council executives, who are believed to be loyal to former governor and current Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike. They have vowed not to vacate their offices, setting the stage for a potential conflict.

A viral video showing armed men crossing a creek into the state has added to the tension. The group leader in the video declared they were back to eject any council chairmen refusing to leave office.

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Youths in several local government areas, including Degema and Asari-Toru, have occupied headquarters, demanding that the chairmen step down. Security has been heightened in places like Port Harcourt City Local Government Area and Obio/Akpor Local Government Area to prevent unrest.

Commissioner of Police, Olatunji Disu, warned against violence, stating, “Anyone found doing so would face the full wrath of the law.” He also urged parents to prevent their children from getting involved, cautioning them against being used as “cannon fodder.”

The situation remains tense as the state awaits further developments.

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