Home Politics Again, Rivers House of Assembly elects Jumbo as new Speaker

Again, Rivers House of Assembly elects Jumbo as new Speaker

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By Chris Udochukwu

RIVERS – The political crisis in Rivers State, south-south Nigeria, took a dramatic turn on Wednesday as lawmakers loyal to Governor Siminalayi Fubara elected Hon. Victor Oko Jumbo as a factional Speaker of the State House of Assembly.

Jumbo’s election comes barely 48 hours after Governor Fubara declared that the majority of the 27 members of the House, who defected from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the All Progressives Congress (APC), as non-existent.

The opposition APC has also instructed its members in the House of Assembly, who are now in the majority, to impeach the governor.

Baring that in mind, a source said some lawmakers met on Wednesday and elected Jumbo, a ranking member representing Bonny Constituency as the Speaker of the House of Assembly.

Jumbo becomes the third Speaker under the current administration after Hon. Edison Ehie and Hon. Martin Amaewhule.

Recall that in December 2023, the former factional Speaker, Edison Ehie, who was the leader of the pro-Fubara lawmakers, resigned his membership of the Assembly.

This followed a peace deal brokered by President Bola Tinubu in the supremacy battle between Fubara and Wike.

Edison Ehie was later appointed Chief of Staff, Rivers State Government House, by Fubara.

Amaewhule, an ally of the immediate former Governor and current Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike, was impeached last year, giving room for Edison, who later resigned in December 2023.

Edison’s resignation comes shortly after the peace accord between Governor Fubara and his predecessor, Wike, to pave the way for Amaewhule to return to his seat as Speaker.

The election, which was said to have taken place at the Government House, also saw Hon. Sokari Goodboy emerge as a factional Majority Leader of the Assembly.

A government source told SaharaReporters on Wednesday that Fubara was behind Jumbo’s emergence because “he knows that Amaewhule is loyal to Wike and could impeach him anytime, so he arranged for someone loyal to him to emerge as Speaker.

In his resignation letter, he said: “This is to formally notify you of my voluntary resignation as Speaker and Member of the 10th Rivers State House of Assembly representing Ahoada – East Constituency II with effect from the date of this letter.

“I wish to deeply appreciate my colleagues and the people of my Constituency for the rare opportunity to serve and hope to continue to give my utmost best in service to Rivers State subsequently.

“Kindly accept the assurances of my highest esteem at all times.”

Recall that Rivers State was plunged into a political crisis between October 29 and 30, 2023, when the hallowed chamber of the House of Assembly was burnt, following alleged moves to impeach Fubara.

Further recall that on December 18, 2023, that President Tinubu had intervened in the political crisis rocking Rivers State, as the factional Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Edison Ehie, was asked to recognise 27 members of Assembly who defected to the APC.

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