The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Rivers State has commended the police for standing firm to protect the headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Aba Road in Port Harcourt. The party said the protest had other motives, one being to invade the INEC offices and destroy the records so as to stop the collation expected to take place next week.
A statement by the party said; “Sequel to plans by the Rotimi Amaechi’s faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to continue public protests as a weapon for scuttling the collation and announcement of results of the March 9, 2019 Governorship and State Assembly elections in Rivers State, an attempt by some members of the APC loyal to Amaechi attempted to break into the Independent National Electoral Commission’s (INEC) office along Aba in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital on Friday morning.
“The APC thugs had assembled at the popular Polo Club along Tombia Street, GRA, Port Harcourt, as early as 6 a.m. on Friday in company of some chieftains of the Amaechi’s faction of the APC, from where the movement to the INEC office was scheduled to begin.
“With the ban on all forms of public protests in the State by the Rivers State Government still in force, the APC hoodlums, majority of whom were said to have been hired from neighboring States on the order of their paymasters, decided to test the resolve of government and took the march towards the INEC office which is a few poles away from the Polo Club.
“On getting close to INEC office, the thugs threw caution to the wind, and tried to force their way into the office and almost had their way but for the resilience of police officers who had to fire canisters of teargas into the air to disperse them.
“Meanwhile, the Rivers State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has raised fresh alarm over the desperation of the APC faction loyal to Transportation Minister, Rotimi Amaechi to scuttle the collation and announcement of the results of the March 9, 2019 Governorship and State Assembly elections.
“The PDP urged President Buhari to call the Transportation Minister to order even as the party further called on the Inspector-General of Police to keep a close tab on the activities of Rotimi Amaechi in the State.
“It was alleged that Amaechi on Thursday while addressing his supporters, instructed them to continue public protests in the State so as to cause a breach of the peace and disrupt the collation and announcement of the Governorship election results”, the party said.
“Amaechi was further alleged to have threatened to deal with any security agent or agency that will enforce the Rivers State Government ban on public protests.
“The PDP make bold to say that what Amaechi intends to achieve, if not properly checked by security agencies, is to cause sufficient crisis, not minding how many Rivers people are killed or wounded.
“The party said it is clear that the APC is kicking against the government ban on public protests as the ban will deflate their plans to cause crisis in the State.
“It is now obvious that APC is angry over the ban on public protests. They had intended to hide under public protests and use it as a weapon to unleash mayhem on the State which will in turn scuttle the collation and declaration of the Governorship election results in the State”, the PDP said while urging the APC to be law-abiding rather than taking the laws into their hands.”