RIVERS: APC, PDP Begin New Feud, Accuse Each Other Of Political Murders

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The Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC), has called on President Muhammadu Buhari, to urgently probe alleged political murders associated with the 2015 polls in the state.

According to a statement issued by the state’s chairman, Davies Ikanya, alleged that the party’s witnesses at the state Governorship Election Petition Tribunal are being harassed by the People’s Democratic Party in the state.

The petition entitled, “The case of 97 murdered citizens in Rivers State: A call for justice and protection of the lives of our tribunal witnesses,” he said, “captured the threat and present insecurity in Rivers State and the attitude of the governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, over the sad situation.

“It is a cause for concern that in spite of local and international condemnations that followed the violence-ridden elections in Rivers State held on March 28 and April 11, the security agencies are not known to have investigated, arrested or prosecuted anyone for the murder and arson unleashed on innocent Nigerians, whose only offence was to belong to and support a political party of their choice, as enshrined in the Nigerian Constitution,” Rivers APC chairman said.

“However, on assumption of office, Chief Nyesom Wike procured a court judgment barring the constituted Chidi Odinkalu Commission of Inquiry. This desperate action by Chief Wike and the Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) denied the people justice,” he said.

He lamented that months after the inauguration of his administration, Chief Wike had carried on as if nothing happened.

“His Government has not made any effort at bringing the perpetrators of these horrid crimes to book, perhaps because of the alleged involvement of his core supporters in the cold-blooded murders. In the light of the above, we are very disturbed by the persistent threats to the lives of our witnesses,” he stated.

He passionately appealed to President Buhari to hasten to make good his promise to Rivers people on May 13, 2015, when he vowed to revisit the issue, saying: “We will confront them with facts and figures. We will not forgive and we will not forget those who perpetrated killings and arson in Rivers State during the elections.”

Rivers APC demanded that the Prof. Chidi Odinkalu Commission of Inquiry report be revisited urgently, while also calling on all security agencies to take necessary preventive measures to guarantee the safety of witnesses testifying at the various Election Petition Tribunals.

Responding, Nyesom Wike said the immediate past administration of Rotimi Amaechi destroyed all the institutions of governance in Rivers State, especially the judiciary, leading to the rise in insecurity in the state. He spoke through his Special Assistant on Media, Simeon Nwakaudu.

“The same administration, in which Mr. Ikanya was a principal actor ensured that the police and other security agencies were not supported by the state government through additional funding and logistics, hence they were unable to respond to security challenges during the disastrous reign of Amaechi.

“It was under the Rivers State APC administration that known cultists were released from detention for political reasons a few days to the general elections. Nigerians heard the Rivers State PDP raise alarm when the former governor took that action.

“Since May 29, Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has taken very proactive measures to improve security in the state and address the security challenges deliberately created by the failed Amaechi administration.

“He has restored the judiciary to ensure the dispensation of justice and in liaison with the State House of Assembly enacted the Anti-Kidnapping and Cultism to deal with obvious challenges inherited from the Rivers State APC.

He has improved funding for the security agencies and equipped them with 64 Hilux vans to improve their response to security challenges. Today, the state is better secured with further steps taken to improve the security situation.

“Mr. Ikanya cannot continue to rehash same lies all over again. They were at the tribunal, tendered the same concocted photographs which were rejected. They failed to call any witnesses to prove that their members suffered any violence and they had no case other than the tales by four misguided gossips who pretended to be soldiers and policemen.

“The game is up for the Rivers State APC. These lies are no longer effective and it is time that Mr. Ikanya sought another means of livelihood,” he stated.

Wike said Rivers State was a federating unit in Nigeria with him as governor, advising Ikanya and his sponsors to accept that Wike is Chief Executive and his actions driven by the need to promote the interest of the people of the state.

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