The Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress has declared a week of mourning for nine of its members killed in two separate incidents in Port Harcourt, the state capital, on Saturday night.
While five of the men were killed in the D-Line area of Port Harcourt, the other four died along the Eastern By-Pass in the Marine Base area of the state capital.
In a statement by its chairman, Davies Ikanya, on Tuesday, the APC, which condemned the killing, said its members were targeted in the two incidents indicates that they were politically-motivated murders aimed at reducing its membership ahead of the general elections.
The party challenged the law enforcement agencies to rise to the occasion and apprehend and bring the culprits to book.
It said, “We are deeply shocked and saddened by the death of these innocent men and regard them as martyrs of our nascent democracy. We wish to assure those they have left behind that these party faithful will be celebrated and mourned accordingly.
“Their deaths will strengthen us the more to ensure that evil men are not be allowed to govern our State again.”
The APC said its members in the state will on March 15 pray for the repose of their souls in their various churches. “We owe them this honour even as we strive to honour them the more by ensuring that their dream of landslide victory for our great party in the forthcoming general elections is realized,” the party said.
The party cautioned the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and its supporters to eschew violence as no amount of violence and intimidation would save it from being disgraced during the March 28 and April 11 elections in the State.
It also asked its sympathizers and the international community “to constantly remember us in their prayers as both our candidate, Dakuku Peterside and all APC Chieftains are all targets for elimination by the newly assembled PDP Killer Squad”.