Text of Press Briefing by Dr. Dakuku Adol Peterside

We Have no Hand in Police Takeover of Rivers LG Secretariats – APC The All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State has dismissed claims by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) that APC is behind the takeover of Local Government Secretariats in the State by the Police. Rivers APC Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya, said in a statement issued Sunday morning in the State capital, Port Harcourt: “The accusation is watery, baseless and without foundation. APC as a party has nothing to do with the Police taking over the LG Secretariats in Rivers State. We are not a lawless party like PDP that used the Police and other security organs to make the State virtually ungovernable during their time in power at the centre.”

Dr. Ikanya pointed out that APC has always been known as a party that respects and advocates strict adherence to the rule of law, saying there was no way it would suddenly turn around to do otherwise. His words:

“The memory of how the lawless PDP-led Federal Government under the watch of Dr. Goodluck Jonathan used the Police to harass, intimidate and hound then-Governor Rotimi Amaechi and APC leaders in Rivers State remains ever fresh. PDP leaders in the State clapped and danced when their leader, Chief Nyesom Wike, murdered the rule of law through the infamous CP Joseph Mbu. He heartlessly dispersed 13,000 teachers who gathered to receive their employment letters, aided the five renegade lawmakers to attempt the impeachment of the then Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, barricaded and sealed the State Assembly for one legislative year and even blocked the access road to the Government House on one occasion, preventing Governor Amaechi and his visitors from using the road. It was the same Wike who as a junior Minister and with the backing of the then lawless First Lady Patience Jonathan ordered his thugs to stone State Governors who visited Rivers in solidarity with Amaechi for the humiliation he suffered under the watchful eyes of then-President Jonathan. Wike later used the police and the army to forcefully break into the newly constructed stadium just to prove his powers.

“Having unequivocally condemned such excesses, there is no way we as a party could possibly turn around to instigate the Police under the new, law-abiding administration of President Muhammadu Buhari, to walk the path of infamy as was the case during the discredited Jonathan administration. In any case, even if we haboured any such thoughts, it wouldn’t have been possible to execute it under the present dispensation as the President Buhari Administration is not running a lawless government as was the case during the time of Dr. Jonathan and could not have directed the Police to embark upon any illegal act.”

While restating Rivers APC’s rejection of the controversial order by Justice Lambo Akanbi of the Federal High Court Port Harcourt sacking the 22 LG Chairmen elected during the Amaechi era, Rivers APC stressed that it will follow constitutionally approved judicial processes to seek justice in the matter. The party commended the Police for acting promptly to forestall the breakdown of law and order following Justice Akanbi’s unpopular judgement. It vowed “to do everything lawful to ensure that our elected LG councils are not in any way humiliated out of office.” It called for calm while reassuring the good people of Rivers State that the mandate they gave APC to administer the LG councils would be retrieved and restored in due time.

Signed Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, SSA Media and Public Affairs to the State Chairman, APC Rivers State

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