Port Harcourt, the oil rich Garden City of Nigeria respectfully stood still as the nation relocated to Rivers State for the burial ceremonies of Madam Charity Oba, the foster mother of the First Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan.
Earlier, Governor Amaechi and his Bayelsa State counterpart, Seriake Dickson had led other dignitaries to receive the president at the Port Harcourt International Airport. The two governors also joined the president in an exclusive helicopter ride into the city of Port Harcourt.
The politicians did not find it hard to put aside their political differences in order to give Madam Oba a befitting burial. Shortly before the burial commenced, Governor Amaechi was seen dancing to the admiration and applause of the crowd. Throughout the burial ceremony at Okrika Governers Amaechi and Dickson were seen glued to each other like Siamese twins. It could be recalled that Governor Amaechi’s relationship with the first family has not been too cordial since 2010 when in a reception ceremony for Dame Patience in Okrika, the governor had voiced his desire to acquire and demolish some structures that were hindering the expansion of a model primary school. The governor’s decision to demolish had angered the first lady so much that she openly scolded him. Political suspicion especially after the governor got himself reelected as the chairman of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum has even made worse the already strained relationship.
Speaking at the funeral of Madam Oba who died in a motor accident on July 22 along Port Harcourt Elele highway, President Goodluck Jonathan enjoined all to strive to leave behind a legacy that would speak for them when they are no more. Also speaking, Dame Patience extolled the sterling qualities of her late foster mother.
The ceremony was graced by the vice president, serving governors, ministers, members of the national assembly and other national leaders.