Five pro-Wike commissioners quit Fabara’s cabinet

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Five commissioners serving in the cabinet of the governor of Rivers State, Mr Siminalayi Fubara, have resigned their appointments.
The commissioners are Prof. Chinedu Mmom (education), Dr. Gift Worlu (housing), Austen Ben-Chioma (environment), Inime Aguma (social welfare), and Jacobson Nbina (transport).
The quintet submitted their resignation in separate letters addressed to the governor through the secretary to the state government, Dr Tammy Danagogo.
The five commissioners are loyal to the minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and Fubara’s predecessor, Mr Nyesom Wike.
They were reappointed after a peace deal between Wike and Fubara, which was facilitated by President Bola Tinubu. Despite the agreement, the political crisis in the state persists.

In his letter, Mmom thanked Fubara for the opportunity “to serve in your cabinet” but noted that “there is loss of trust, animosity and sharp division among colleagues in the same cabinet which is unhealthy and very unfortunate.”
The letter reads: “I write to formally tender my resignation as a member of the Rivers State Executive Council as the Commissioner for Education with effect from today, May 15, 2024.

“It is a truism that a calm, safe, and friendly environment would stimulate efficient service delivery and enhanced productivity. It is, however, unfortunate to note that my current workspace has become toxic and no longer guarantees a favourable environment to enable me to realise my set targets for the education sector in the state.

“There is loss of trust, animosity and sharp division among colleagues in the same cabinet which is unhealthy and very unfortunate. I want to thank Your Excellency for the opportunity to serve in your cabinet and wish your administration well.”

Ben-Chioma said he resigned his portfolio because of the political crisis in the state.
“I hereby tender my resignation as the Commissioner for Environment, Rivers State, on this day, May 15, 2024.

“I want to sincerely appreciate Your Excellency for giving me the opportunity to be a part of the State Executive Council. My decision to resign is due to the political crisis befalling our dear Rivers State and other personal reasons.

“It was a privilege to have been of service to you in your administration and wish you all the best in your tenure,” he wrote.

For his part, Worlu described his resignation as the “most difficult decisions of my life” saying it was informed by the “toxic atmosphere that has characterised our working relationship.”

The letter says: “I write to resign my appointment as the Commissioner for Housing formally. One of the most difficult decisions in my life yet, it is precipitated by the toxic atmosphere that has characterised our working relationship, especially the smouldering arbitrariness of decisions and actions, including the attempt to fuse the executive and legislative arms of government in Rivers State.

“I thank you for the opportunity to serve in your government and wish you the best as you continue to steer the ship of state. Kindly accept the assurances of my esteemed regards.”

Nbina, in his letter dated May 15, wrote, “I write to formally tender my resignation as honourable commissioner for transport and member of Rivers State Executive Council with effect from May 15, 2024.

“It has been a privilege to serve in this capacity, and thank Your Excellency for the opportunity to serve our state, which I served dutifully and meritoriously.”
He further thanked President Tinubu for his interventions in the political crisis that is happening in the state, which he said was leading to a lack of trust and apathy.
In her letter, Aguma said she was resigning in pursuant to the current inconducive working environment in the governor’s administration.

The letter reads, “Pursuant to the current inconducive working environment, it is imperative to tender my resignation as Commissioner for Social Welfare and Rehabilitation, Rivers State.

“I resign with all sense of responsibility especially as there is no room for progression and development in the work place.

Prior to the exit of the five, the attorney general and commissioner for justice, Prof Zacchaeus Adangor, and former commissioner for finance, Mr Isaac Kamalu resigned from the cabinet after Fubara directed them to be redeployed to the ministry of special duties (governor’s office) and ministry for employment generation and empowerment, respectively.

Recall that on Monday, Fubara said a judicial panel of inquiry would be set up to investigate the management of the state’s resources and affairs under the past administration.