Rivers State Government has said the admonition to traditional rulers to stay away from partisan politics is in the best interest of the state and integrity of the positions they occupy as impartial peacemakers.
Reacting to a press statement issued by Dr. Chidi Lloyd, on behalf of Tonye Cole Campaign Organisation describing Governor Nyesom Wike’s advise as inciting, the Commissioner for Information and Communications, Emma Okah, said the director general is misguided because Rivers people are not in a hurry to return to the dark days before May 29, 2015, when the sword of agony hung over the head of traditional rulers if they did not openly support the All Progressives Congress (APC).
“Before Wike came into office, the APC government in the state implemented an unwritten code that traditional rulers should support only the APC candidates in the state and shun politicians from the PDP or face severe sanctions.
As a result, many of them ran away from their palaces and refused to receive Wike who was then the PDP governorship candidate, in order to avoid the APC mayhem.
“It is on record that some traditional rulers at that time were actively involved in partisan politics and taking advertisements in national and local newspapers to campaign for the APC and in spite of this, the Wike administration did not punish any of them when he became governor.
Although, Cole is new to the politics of Rivers, it is important that his campaign director states why the Elele King was denied staff of office, official vehicle and allowances after receiving Wike in his
palace in Elele town.
Contrary to the cheap propaganda mouthed by the APC campaign director, Okah said traditional rulers are custodians of culture and tradition of their people as well as peacemakers in their domain.