The political landscape of Rivers State has become highly charged as the rivalry between former Governor Nyesom Wike and his estranged godson, Siminalayi Fubara, escalates.
In a recent interview, Wike expressed his disdain for ingrates, hinting at the upcoming battle between the two. This clash is not unprecedented, as past conflicts between incumbent governors and their godfathers have typically favored the former. Here are some notable examples:
Peter Obi vs Willie Obiano: After campaigning vigorously for Obiano to succeed him, Obi’s relationship with his successor deteriorated following Obi’s departure from the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) and his support for the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) candidate in the 2017 election.
Akpabio vs Udom: Akpabio handpicked Udom as his successor in Akwa Ibom State, but their relationship soured to the point where Akpabio left the party and joined the All Progressives Congress (APC) after feeling insulted by Udom.
Orji Uzor Kalu vs Theodore Orji: Orji, who served as Chief of Staff to Kalu, succeeded him as Governor of Abia State. However, their relationship turned bitter, and Kalu has been attempting a comeback in the state.
Chimaroke Nnamani vs Sullivan Chime: Nnamani’s choice of Chime as his successor led to a battle between the two, resulting in Nnamani’s limited access to the state and Chime’s ban of the Ebeano political group.
Kwankwaso vs Ganduje: Kwankwaso and Ganduje were closely aligned for many years, but their relationship deteriorated soon after Ganduje’s election as governor, leading to a protracted struggle over political control in Kano State.
Adams Oshiomhole vs Godwin Obaseki: Oshiomhole fought to pave the way for Obaseki’s succession in Edo State, but their fierce battle resulted in Oshiomhole’s suspension and Obaseki’s consolidation of political power.
Wamakko/Tambuwal: Wamakko initially backed Tambuwal’s bid for governor of Sokoto State, but Tambuwal eventually moved back to the PDP, leading to a strained relationship between the two.
Tinubu vs Ambode: Ambode enjoyed the support of Tinubu initially, but he lost his bid for re-election as governor of Lagos State after Tinubu withdrew his support and endorsed Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
Imoke vs Ayade: Imoke supported Ayade’s candidacy for governor of Cross Rivers State, but their relationship soured, leading Ayade to defect to the APC.
Akume vs Suswan: Akume backed Gabriel Suswan’s election as governor of Benue State, but they later had a falling out, resulting in Akume’s departure from the PDP and his support for Samuel Ortom.
Ibori/Okowa: Okowa, backed by James Ibori, successfully challenged Ibori’s grip on Delta State’s political structure, emerging as governor despite a defeat in the presidential election.
These examples demonstrate the complex dynamics and power struggles that often arise between godfathers and their political sons, with outcomes varying in each case.