By Sodiq Lawal
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state has hailed the National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria under the Co-chairmanship of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Ogunwusi and Sultan of Sokoto, His Eminence Alhaji Sa’ad Abubakar for their relentless efforts at keeping the country together.
Governor Wike made the commendation on Monday in his office while hosting the traditional rulers who had paid him a courtesy visit. He promised to always partner with the traditional institutions, saying that is what is needed to move the country in the direction of unity which according to him remains non-negotiable.
“The Sultan and Ooni are my fathers. We are so grateful to be the State you have chosen to host this historic national event which is the 9th General Assembly of The National Council of Traditional Rulers of Nigeria”.
“For us in Rivers state, the unity of Nigeria is very imperative and it remains non-negotiable. It is too important to be toyed with. That is why we will always partner with our traditional rulers as we have been doing.
“Gone are the days when the king’s would only sit at their palaces restricting Governance to the government alone. Every citizen of this country comes from a traditional ruler. So, we are all accountable to you no matter who we are be it President or Governor.
That’s how we do in this state as a government, thank God the Chairman of Rivers Council of Traditional Rulers is here, King Jaja of Opobo. He can testify”. Governor Wike said
Speaking on behalf of the visiting monarchs, a Co-chairman of National Traditional Rulers Council Of Nigeria, Ooni Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II of Ile-Ife who is also the Chairman of the Southern Nigeria Traditional Rulers Council appreciated the Governor and the people of Rivers state for hosting them at this period which he said is a very crucial time in the country when unity must be the collective watchword.
“We thank you Mr Governor and your team for hosting the Nigerian traditional rulers who have come from all parts of the country to discuss on how to join hands with government for the unity and progress of Nigeria ”
“We are here to see how best we can further cement our togetherness across all the districts within the North and South of the country because unity is all we need. As matter of fact, our first demand is unity, our second demand is unity and our third demand is unity”. Ooni Ogunwusi said.
He added “The truth be told, the traditional rulers are the closest to the grassroots. We can not fold our arms, we must work together and join forces with the government and others leaders of thoughts in this country if truly we must progress as a people”.
The National Council of Traditional Rulers Council Of Nigeria is holding its 9th General Assembly at Port Harcourt in Rivers State from Monday 30th to Tuesday 31s of January, 2018