The Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC, has initiated moves to report the leadership of the state chapter of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, to international organisations for “violence unleashed on the APC” ahead of the February general elections.
In a statement, the spokesperson of the state chairman, APC Rivers, Chukwuemeka Eze, said the leadership of the APC has set up a ten-man committee to compile evidence of attacks against APC members, offices and properties.
Mr. Eze said this was done with a view to getting the international organisations – the United Nations, Amnesty International, ECOWAS – to intervene before the situation gets out of hand and “enemies of democracy use Rivers State as a battle ground.”
According to the statement, the committee was inaugurated on Monday in Port Harcourt by the Rivers State APC Chairman, Davies Ikanya.
The committee was given seven days to submit its report and recommendations.
Mr. Ikanya urged the committee to specifically get details on how the party’s two secretariats in Okirika and Adoni were bombed within a space of less than a week.
He said the committee should get the total number of APC members that have been killed or maimed, and the circumstances under which these evils were perpetrated.
“It has become the trend to attack our members and destroy APC’s campaign billboards, posters and banners, particularly those of our party’s standard bearer, whenever the party is to go out for campaign in any particular locality,” Mr. Ikanya said.
He alleged that in any local government area where Nyesome Wike, the state PDP leader and gubernatorial candidate was set to campaign thugs moved in overnight and removed APC’s billboards, posters and banners. “To create the impression that Wike is fully on the ground in the area while he knows that he is not on ground in any part of Rivers State,” Mr. Ikanya said.
He said the APC could no longer fold arms and watch while people were viciously attacked and slaughtered.
He accused the security agencies in Rivers State, including the Police and the Department of State Security, DSS, of failing to make any arrest or call the PDP leadership to order, alleging that agencies are controlled by the PDP-led Federal Government, which is desperate to take over Rivers State at all cost.
“We are disappointed that Chief Nyesome Wike has not been invited for questioning or cautioned despite his excesses and those of his supporters,” he said.
Mr. Ikanya noted that the people of Rivers State APC believed in a violence-free election and campaign based on issues.
He appealed to the international community to come to the rescue as unchecked violence in Rivers State had the potential to instigate a chain of events that may truncate Nigeria’s nascent democracy.