The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State has noted with sadness of what it describes as “implementation of the plot by the Grassroot Development Initiative (GDI)”, the political machinery of Supervising Minister for Education, Barrister Nyesom Wike and some PDP Stakeholders to unleash mayhem and disrupt APC’s membership registration exercise which started today in 4,442 political Units across the State.
The party in an online press release by Jerry Needam alleged, “This evil plot which was hatched during a meeting held in the house of a GDI chieftain in Obio Akpor LGA, Chief Timothy Nsirim, where GDI and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) leaders were directed to ensure that our registration centres are attacked within days of this exercise and were assured that the police had been fully briefed and would not intervene”.
Continuing, the party said, “When we first got intelligence reports on the planned attacks, we initially did not attach much importance to it, but we were proved wrong when some of our registration officers and innocent citizens of Rivers State who turned up to be registered by APC as the exercise took off today were attacked by thugs hired by PDP and GDI. To our shock, our Registration Units in Tombia, old Bakana all in Kalabari axis of the State and Woji Ward 6 in Obio-Akpor LGA the Local Government Area of Chief Nyesom Wike were all attacked. Our Degema LGA Supervisory Committee Chairman for the Registration exercise and former Chairman Rivers State Civil Service Commission, Mr. Ben Orugbani escaped death when his house was shattered with bullets in the old Bakana just for accepting to ensure that this type of politics of odium and violence is stopped in Rivers State”.
The APC called on the good people of the state not to be intimidated as they have the right to register and freely associate with any political party of their choice – APC in this case.
The party who urged their registration officers to carry on with the exercise without fear, called on the police to protect their registration officers and the innocent citizens who wish to register with APC from the hands of hoodlums who think that politics is all about violence and intimidation.
APC warned GDI and PDP to have a rethink and avoid pushing the party to the wall as nobody or group has the monopoly of violence.
The APC State Interim Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya who monitored the registration exercise in Port Harcourt, Obio-Akpor, Eleme and Ikwerre LGAs expressed happiness with the large turnout of people for the exercise.
“With what I saw today, PDP is truly dead in Rivers State,” Dr. Ikanya said and assured the people that “the revolution started by Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi in Rivers State will surely be sustained even after he leaves office in 2015 by the APC Adminstration”.
Meanwhile, the Rivers State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has described the claims of APC as a false alarm.
The full text of the statement read:
The attention of the Rivers State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has been drawn to a false alarm by one Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, claiming that the PDP and GDI unleashed mayhem on APC registration officials in Degema and Obio/Akpor Local Government Areas today.
It is not in the character of the PDP to react to daily intentional false statements and alarm by Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, but however, wish to state on this particular false alarm as follows:
1. That Eze’s claim that PDP, GDI, unleashed mayhem on APC registration officials in Degema and Obio/Akpor or any other part of Rivers State is completely false and unfounded.
2. That it shows that APC is already accepting defeat and afraid that Rivers People would not register in the party.
3. That the PDP and GDI did not disrupt and have no plan to disrupt the APC ongoing registration exercise.
4. That if Rivers people have shunned their registration exercise, they should not blame the PDP and or the GDI.
5. That APC is an ethnic group and an Islamic party and Rivers people cannot register in an ethnic party and a party that belongs to one religion. Any party that belongs to one religion doesn’t promote the unity of Rivers State and Nigeria at large.
6. That no meeting of the PDP and or the GDI was held in the house of the Chairman of Obio/Akpor Local Government Council, Chief (Hon) Timothy Nsirim.
7. That the APC should rather blame Senator Magnus Abe and Hon Dakuku Peterside Governorship supporters that are spoiling for a showdown to grab the soul of the APC, having been separately anointed by Governor Rotimi Amaechi to succeed him.
8. That the APC should caution and call to order supporters of their two governorship candidates (Senator Abe and Hon. Peterside), and stop blaming either the PDP or GDI for their internal crisis