Nigerian Governors have finally elected a new leader for its forum, in the person of Governor Abdulaziz Yari, of Zamfara State. The meeting which held yesterday at the Lagos/Osun Hall of the Transcorp Hilton Hotel, Abuja.
Outgoing chairman of the body and Governor of Rivers State, Rotimi Amaechi, read the communique of the meeting to journalists. Mr. Amaechi said Mr. Yari emerged chairman by consensus and would serve for a period of one year.
Mr. Yari was the former deputy chairman of the Forum but, a deputy chairperson was not appointed to replace him.
Gov. Ameachi however, said the governors have been reconciled after a year of bickering, the and are United as a single umbrella association of the 36 state governors of Nigeria. He went further to say; “There is the need for the Minister of Finance and coordinating Minister for the economy Dr. Ngozi Okonjo -Iweala to provide explanation for accruals to this account from June 2013 to April 2015 which is estimated at over N20billion”.
In addition, Gov. Amaechi said the Forum resolved at the meeting to set up a Governors’ Forum Academy to be called “The NGF Leadership Academy” which will be responsible for capacity building of governors and other officials holding public office.
The Forum descended into crisis in May 2013 after the election of officials split the body into two. An election which saw Gov. Ameachi defeat his Plateau state’s counterpart, Gov. Jonah Jang, by 19 votes to 16.
However, indications at the time suggested that the Presidency was pushing for the emergence of anyone but the Rivers governor as NGF chair because of the political differences between Gov. Amaechi and President Goodluck Jonathan and his wife, Patience.
After the election, Mr. Jang refused to accept defeat and formed a parallel NGF with his colleagues who voted for him.