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Thursday, July 18, 2024

JUST IN: I will not represent 2024 Rivers budget- Fubara

The political crisis rocking the Rivers may not end soon even after the Appeal Court intervention after the State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, declared that the 2024 budget will not be represented before the 25 lawmakers loyal to the Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike, saying I am already preparing the 2025 budget and will not be presented before them.

Fubara said that the lawmakers led by Martin Amaewhule, the former Speaker, do not exist since their seats have been declared vacant following their decision to dump the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress remain vacant.

He stated that they would eventually return home because they desired it to be so when they voluntarily defected from the platform on which they won their election.

The governor’s stance came two days after the pro-Wike lawmakers issued a seven-day ultimatum to him, demanding that the budget presented to the Victor Oko-Jumbo-led House loyal to Fubara, must be brought before them for approval to avoid further contravention of the law in the state.

Fubara spoke when he received on solidarity visit opinion leaders, women, and youths of Etche and Omuma Local Government Areas led by Ogbakor Etche at the Government House in Port Harcourt, the state capital, on Wednesday.
This was contained in a statement issued by his Chief Press Secretary, Nelson Chukwudi.

The governor urged the former lawmakers to wake up from their slumber to see the ship of governance in the state sailing on smoothly.

Fubara also said that his administration has started preparing details of the 2025 Appropriation Bill, with priority placed on education, healthcare, and agriculture.

He said, “Let me assure you that agriculture is an area that we have promised the very special and peace-loving people of Rivers State that our 2025 budget, which we have already started preparing, will address.

“Don’t bother about those people who are delusional. They think we are still sleeping. Let me tell you people so that they can hear anywhere they are.

“I wanted to help them, sincerely because I know them. And I have said it before, these are people that I have helped. I paid their children’s school fees. I paid their house rent. So, I wanted to help them.

“We all knew what happened when they crossed (defected), and how did they cross? Because of our God, for them to make that mistake, they crossed! They are gone, and they are gone. Now, let me tell you: when I wanted to help them, I accepted to help them because we are all one. We disagree to agree as it is said.”

Fubara explained that the three priority areas that the 2025 budget will focus on will ensure that even if more roads are constructed, emphasis will be placed on providing quality healthcare services to keep the people healthy.

“Our children need to go to quality schools. Even if they can’t go to private schools, let them go to the public ones that have standards. We need to go to good health facilities owned by the government and get standard healthcare services.

“Even if we cannot afford those private hospitals, when you go to the public ones, you can get the same services with qualified professionals. That is our thinking.

“And when we get to the issue of agriculture, it will address the issue of unemployment. When we start engaging our youths, they won’t have time to be involved in crime. So, our thinking is to secure and protect our State,” he added.

He reiterated that his administration is not fighting anybody and will continue to show appreciation to those who have contributed to the good fortunes that he has received in life.

The governor, however, clarified that being loyal does not mean losing one’s liberty, sense of discretion, and what is right, which is why he will not be a governor forced on his knees.

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