Gov Wike reveals the dangers he faced in Benin to snatch victory for PDP


* As PDP says its governors lodge have been barricaded by over 300 policemen

Victory tales are usually sweet and Gov Nyesom Wike of Rivers State is busy telling the tale. He led the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to the Edo battleground and brought the trophy home.

The people met him at the airport and carried him ‘shoulder high’ the way of heroes and danced home. The Edo team followed suit and paid him homage.

Wike told the world on Thursday, September 24, 2020, that at a point, the Police Inspector-General (IGP) asked him to leave Benin. He said he refused, mentioning that APC governors were on ground and that he was the chairman of the PDP campaign committee. He did not say how the matter ended but it was clear that nothing wa done to him.

When Rivers governor, Chibuike Amaechi, was stopped from entering Ondo State for election duty during the Goodluck Jonathan administration. Such seems to be the way of Nigerian politics.

Gov Wike of Rivers State had raised alarm that his life is in danger in Benin. The alarm was raised in a statement on election even by the Rivers State Commissioner of Information and Communications, Paulinus Msirim, who the governor was being shoed out of Edo State few hours to the governorship contest that has narrowed between the Peoples Democratic Party and the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The national chairman of the PDP, Rivers-born Uche Secondus, also addressed newsmen in Benin, alleging that governors of his party who came to Benin to lend support to their candidate have been under clampdown in a hotel. Both the national PDP body and Gov Wike in separate statements called on the international community to take note of the security developments in Benin.

Gov Wike particularly urged President Muhammadu Buhari to remember his pledge for a peaceful electoral conduct in Edo State.

Msirim said; “What is more disturbing is that the policemen led by DIG Leye Oyebanji have also been very audible with threats that he should leave Edo State. We want to place on record that the Rivers State governor was appointed the PDP National Campaign Council chairman for the September 19th 2020 Edo State governorship election.

”This is a legitimate, constitutionally recognized appointment in the electoral rules, guidelines and processes of our country. It confers on him, the democratic authority to be in Edo State to spearhead the campaign and lend support to the Governorship candidate of his political party.

”Gov Wike has not committed any crime to warrant this intimidation and we want to state categorically that the siege on his hotel is totally unlawful, illegitimate and provocative.

”This is even more so when placed against the backdrop of the fact that Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State, who equally occupies this same position in the All Progressives Congress, APC and indeed his counterpart, Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State, are all in Benin, Edo State, carrying out the same assignment for the APC.

”They are moving about freely, without any siege on their locations or molestation, threats, harassments and intimidation.

”We hereby put the Nigerian Government and International Community on notice that the life of Governor Wike is in danger and under serious threat. Rivers people will hold the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu, personally responsible if any thing happens to the life of our governor.”

The PDP national body said their governor’s lodge has been under security siege whereas the APC governors in Benin were freely driving about the state.