Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has said he will resist any move by the Federal Government to withdraw funds from the Excess Crude Account, ECA.
Governor Wike, who spoke on Friday at the Government House in Port Harcourt when he played host to the Emir of Kano, Alhaji Aminu Ado Bayero, wondered what happened to the $1 billion withdrawn from the ECA in 2017 on the claim that it will be used to fund the fight against Boko Haram insurgents in the Northeast.
The Rivers State Governor said he will not support the plan for a fresh withdrawal except Rivers State is given its 13 per cent share from the account.
“Yesterday [Thursday], I was told that the governors agreed that they will take money from Excess Crude [Account] to support the military.
“What of the one they took before, the $1billion that they gave to the military?
“Now again! This one, I’ll tell my Attorney General; you will have to prepare, we will go to court.
“I will not support that one except they’ll give us our 13 per cent first from that Excess Crude Account,” he said.
Governor Wike told the Emir of Kano how his late father and other leaders in their time worked so hard in promoting love, peace and national unity among Nigerians.
He expressed the regret that current political and religious leaders were not building on those successes.
He said they are rather reducing every relationship, appointment, policy and programme of the government to political and religious considerations.
Governor Wike insisted that Nigeria belong to everybody and no one section can assert itself over others.
He said that is why he had provided a conducive environment for all ethnic groups in Rivers State to coexist.
Wike said: “It is important that where we are now, everybody, particularly traditional rulers, should know that they have a major role to play in ensuring that peace reigns in this country.
“This is the first time in Nigeria when we have so much ethnic divide, so much religious divide.
“It has never happened like this before.
“After the civil war, people had seen Nigeria as one country. We have seen ourselves as the same people but what we are facing today is a different thing.
“We are not even talking about the issue of insecurity, but the issue of ethnicity, and religion which have taken centre stage in our life which is not supposed to be.”
The Emir of Kano, on his part, said his visit to Rivers State is part of his fraternal tour to national leaders and traditional institution across the country.
The Emir urged Governor Wike and other regional leaders to continue to ensure that the region remains a welcoming environment for all Nigerians to thrive.