Ezenwo Nyesom Wike CON is a Nigerian politician and attorney, born on December 13, 1967. He served as the governor of Rivers State from 2015 to 2023 and is currently the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory. Wike is of Ikwerre ethnicity and hails from Rumuepirikom in Obio-Akpor, Rivers State.
Education: Master of Arts degree in Political and Administrative Studies
Alma Mater: Rivers State University of Science and Technology (LL.B.)
Occupation: Politician and Lawyer
Before attending the Rivers State University of Science and Technology (RSUT), Wike completed his O’level exams at Government Secondary School Eneka in Obiakpor, Rivers State. Subsequently, in 1997, he enrolled in law school and earned a Bachelor of Laws degree from RSUT. Wike furthered his education at RSUT, obtaining a Master of Arts degree in Political and Administrative Studies.
Politics as a Career
Wike’s political career began with his service as the two-term Executive Chairman of the Obio Akpor Local Government Area from 1999 to 2007.
In July 2011, President Goodluck Jonathan appointed him as the Minister of State for Education, taking over from Ruqayyah Ahmed Rufa’i. Later, he briefly served as the acting Minister of Education but did not complete his term due to his candidacy for the governorship of Rivers State. Viola Onwuliri replaced him in this role.
In the gubernatorial elections held on April 11, Wike emerged victorious, defeating Dakuku Peterside of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Tonye Princewill of the Labour Party. He was declared the winner by INEC on April 3, 2019, and took the oath of office for his second term on May 29, 2019.
In March 2022, Wike announced his candidacy for the office of the President of Nigeria under the platform of the PDP for the 2023 general election. However, he was defeated in the People’s Democratic Party presidential election primary, finishing as the first runner-up with 237 votes to his opponent’s 371 votes.
On August 16, 2023, Nyesom Wike was appointed as the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) by President Bola Tinubu. His nomination was forwarded to the 10th Nigerian Senate by President Tinubu on July 27, 2023, and Wike appeared before the Senate for confirmation on July 31, 2023.
Nyesom Wike implemented significant reforms in the education sector, making primary and secondary education free in Rivers State as part of his educational objectives. He made this announcement during a meeting at the government house in Port Harcourt on June 24, 2019, despite both praise and criticism from various quarters.
Wike also declared free registration for state residents taking the annual JAMB exam in 2019 through the State Ministry of Education.
In 2022, he signed into law legislation strengthening a woman’s right to inherit property, encouraging women to assert their legal rights.
Wike’s Projects During his second term as governor, Nyesom Wike initiated the construction of three major flyovers in Port Harcourt simultaneously. These flyovers were built at Garrison, Rumoukoro, and Artillery locations.