Rivers to join suit against naira swap, hails Supreme Court verdict

By Chris Ezeonoh, Port Harcourt

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has said that the state government would seek to join in the suit instituted by three other state governments against the implementation of the naira swap policy of the federal government.

The governor who stated this on Wednesday commended the Supreme Court of Nigeria for “saving democracy by halting the Central Bank from banning the use of the old naira notes of N200, N500 and N1000 after February 10th 2023”.

The governor said the intervention of the Supreme Court is timely because there are some elements that are bent on derailing the ongoing democratic process.

Wike spoke at the County State School, Emilaghan in Central Abua, venue of the Rivers State Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) organized campaign flag-off rally in Abua/Odual Local Government Area.

“I want to, on behalf of the Rivers State Government, commend the Nigerian Supreme Court for what they have done today (Wednesday) to save the masses of this country and to save democracy.

“Today, the Supreme Court has stopped the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) from embarking on stopping the old Nigerian Naira notes from circulating.

“And let me commend my brother states like Kogi state, like Kaduna, like Zamfara state who took it upon themselves to go and challenge the federal government at the Supreme Court.

“I also want to say that the Rivers State Government will join them in that suit to challenge what the CBN is doing. We will not support anything that will go against the masses, anything that makes the masses suffer.”

Governor Wike reiterated that the survival of the country’s democracy rests, to a large extent, on critical agencies of government that are expected to live up to their statutory obligations.

“I have said before, this democracy can only survive with the support of INEC, with the support of security agencies and with the support of the judiciary. With what happened today, the Supreme Court has shown that the hope of the common man lies in the judiciary.”

Wike also clarified that the PDP in Rivers State is not part of the PDP group, if any, that has declared support for the “poorly’ implemented currency redesign policy by the CBN.

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“And I want to say; we are not part of that PDP group if there are PDP who support this kind of action. We PDP in Rivers State will not support this kind of action.”

Commenting on the two recent projects that were flag-off in the area, Wike noted that the contractor, Lubrik Construction Company seemed to have slowed down the pace of work on those sites and issued a 24-hour ultimatum to the contractor, not only to return to site but to increase the speed of work.

Campaigning for the Peoples Democratic Party governorship candidate, Sir Siminialayi Fubara, Wike recalled that in 2014, when he visited the area to canvas for support, there was unrest and gunfire renting the air.

But since he became governor, he has restored calm and peace which has engendered development with a good number of projects started and completed in the area.

While noting the existing unity and peaceful coexistence among them, Wike told the Abua/ Odual people that if they continued to work in unity and optimally utilize their permanent voter’s cards for the PDP, they would reap bountifully when the consolidation team wins.

Rivers State governorship candidate of the PDP, Sir Siminialayi Fubara who asked the people to secure their votes for him and other PDP candidates, assured that his administration would sustain the peace in the area by working with traditional rulers and other critical stakeholders.

Fubara also gave the assurance that should there be any uncompleted project in the area that would be inherited; his administration would complete them, among other projects as may be suggested to meet their infrastructural needs.

Presenting the party’s flags to the candidates of the party, Rivers State PDP Chairman, Ambassador Desmond Akawor urged the Abua/Odual people to ensure that they delivered their votes for all PDP candidates.

Speaking on behalf of the candidates, the deputy governor of Rivers State, Dr Ipalibo Harry-Banigo, who is the candidate for Rivers West Senatorial District noted the various projects delivered in the area by Governor Wike have impacted positively on the people.

She pledged that they would speak up for their various constituents and never disappoint their expectations because they would provide quality representation.

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