One hundred and two days after Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike took oath for a second term in office, the state’s cabinet has still not been formed due to what political observers perceive as intrigues for 2023 politics.
Commentators in the state are concerned over delay in the formation of a full-fledged cabinet, which they reckon has substantial political and economic consequences.
Though little is known about the determinants of the delay, but the Governor had in June during a luncheon for members of his second term inauguration committee in Port Harcourt, given a glimpse that his new cabinet will feature mainly leaders from within the state party structure, with a few new officials drawn from outside the system.
“Most of you or some of you must still be part of the government, the cabinet and other parts of the administration. Those of you who are prayer warriors should continue to pray. Generally, it cannot be outside this area. It cannot be. It will be people within the system and some from outside. Don’t feel that we have abandoned you. Not at all! Government House is still open to you.”
Similarly, earlier in May, while playing host to the Charge d’affairs, Embassy of Netherlands, Mrs. Marian Van De Cappello in Port Harcourt, the Governor stated that his new cabinet would comprise 40 percent youths.
“Youths will have 40 percent in the new cabinet. This 40 percent will cover men and women. There will be another 20 percent for women. This means that women will have more than 20 percent in the next cabinet” he said.
Wike, who returned to power with a thumping majority vote in the governorship election, has so far appointed only two members of the Rivers State executive council, Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Dr. Zaccheus Adango and Isaac Kamalu as Commissioner of Finance.
A former lawmaker who preferred not to be mentioned told The Guardian that the reasons for the delay could not be unconnected to the quest of the Governor to manage his political bloc within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the intrigues to succeed him have begun to gather momentum. According to him, there are speculations that the Governor wants his new Secretary to the State Government, Dr. Tammy Danagogo to succeed and will only bring on board only those who share this aspiration.
“Governorship position in Rivers State is either you are anointed or you seize it. That is how governors have been produced in Rivers State since 1999. Those days when a president and one or two stakeholders put heads together to produce governor here is gone. So it is more of you seizing it. Attempt to use the military brought another angle to seizing power, but it didn’t work. Let’s hope that by 2023 something will happen either by mistake” he said.