Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt
Governor Nyesom Wike today signed three amended bills into law. The assent was done today in the executive chambers of government house.
The amended laws are: Kenule Beeson Saro-Wiwa Polytechnic, Bori (Amended Law No. 6 of 2015), was named after the slain Ogoni Environmental rights activist slain by the draconian regime of the late General Sani Abacha.
Others include: Rivers State Kidnap (Prohibition Amended Law No.5 of 2015) and the Rivers State Traditional Rulers Amended Law No. 4 of 2015.
The State Chief Executive who thanked the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi Ibani and the other legislators, remarked that this was the fourth time he would be assenting to a bill since assuming office as Governor of Rivers State.
“The interest of the state is important to all of us,” he stressed.
Governor Wike said the kidnap prohibition amended law would checkmate the activities of kidnappers in the state.
“Whatever money or assets they have gotten through the process of kidnapping will be confiscated by the State Government,” he warned.
Wike noted that the renaming of the Rivers State Polytechnic to Kenule Beeson Saro-Wiwa Polytechnic is an attestation to the fact that Rivers State Government always appreciates and recognizes those who fought for her and the country in general.
“Everybody knows the contributions of Ken Saro-Wiwa, not only as an environmentalist, but also as the first Commissioner of Education during the creation of Rivers State in 1967”, he explained.
On the Traditional Rulers Law amendment law No 4 of 2015, the recalled the mixed reactions it elicited. “What is important to us is that you must respect traditional institutions and give them the pride of place they deserve”, Governor Wike maintained.
The governor commended the Speaker and his team for their collaboration with the executive arm of government and assured members of the house that he will implement the new provisions in the amended laws.
Responding, the Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ikuinyi Ibani thanked the governor for assenting to the aforementioned Bills “Today is one of the happiest days of my life”. He remarked. The Speaker described Governor Wike as a man who is more concerned about others than himself.
Hon Ibani stressed that the people of Rivers State have a lot to gain from the recent amendments.
He reminded the media that the 8th Assembly, on its inauguration day, promised the people of Rivers state that while “personal infractions will be forgiven, infractions against people and the state must be remedied. We are taking remedial steps to correct all the ills found in any law before now”.
Hon. Ibani explained that the Traditional Rulers Law was reframed to give dignity and respect to traditional institutions.