Nyesom Wike, the immediate past governor of Rivers state, is the second southerner to occupy the position of minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja.
Wike was assigned the post on Wednesday, August 16, when the presidency released the portfolio of the new ministers.
This will mark the second time a southerner would be appointed FCT minister since Mobolaji Ajose-Adeogun was appointed in 1976 by the then Head of State, General Olusegun Obasanjo.
Although several southerners like Jumoke Akinjide, Akpan Udo-Udehe, and others have been appointed FCT minister of state, they have not gotten the senior position since Ajose-Adeogun.
It has taken forty-seven years for a non-northerner to occupy the position again.
Coincidentally, just like in 1976, the new minister was appointed by a fellow southerner.
A US-based journalist, Jackson Ude, reported weeks ago that Wike was lobbying the chief of staff to the president, Femi Gbajabiamila, to clinch the FCT minister position.
Many dismissed the report, noting that the role has always been reserved for northerners in recent years.
As chief executive of Rivers, Wike invested heavily in the state’s infrastructure, getting him the nickname ‘Mr Projects’ from the immediate past vice president, Professor Yemi Osinbajo.
His appointment as FCT minister is likely due to his performance as the Rivers state governor.