…says it’s politically motivated
By Jimitota Onoyume
PORT HARCOURT—Rivers State Government has expressed worry over the military operations in three local government areas recently that allegedly resulted in destruction of property and harassment of persons.
Media aide to Governor Nyesom Wike, Mr Simeon Nwakaudu, in a statement, yesterday, alleged that one Major Mustapha, who was reportedly a star witness of the All Progressives Congress, APC, during the hearing on the election petitions in Abuja, was in the team leading the military operations.
The government also expressed worry over the timing, saying that the operations were ahead of the re-run National and State Assemblies elections in the state.
He said: “Ahead of the re-run National and State Assemblies elections in designated constituencies in Rivers State, three local government areas in the state are under politically motivated attacks which have left in their trail, tales of deaths, blood, destruction and open intimidation.
“These joint military/Police invasions have taken place in three councils of the state namely, Gokana, Asari-Toru and Ogba/Egbema/Ndoni(ONELGA). One recurring decimal in these three deadly invasions is the fact that one Major Mustapha features in all of them. Major Mustapha, a pro-APC military officer, was the Rivers State APC star witness during the hearing of election petitions in Abuja.
“At Asari-Toru council on January 6, 2016, Major Mustapha and his team of soldiers and mobile policemen invaded the residence of the caretaker council chairman, Ambassador Sobomabo Jackrich, destroying his home and valuables before killing about five youths. They also abducted 50 youths and women who were taken to Port Harcourt.
“The same scenario played out in Bua Yeghe in Gokana LGA where Major Mustapha and his squad attacked the home of Chief Solomon Ndigbara, a former Niger Delta agitator. They burnt his home before abducting his wife and 70 other youths. Major Mustapha’s illegal squad also attacked the home of Chief Ndigbara in Port Harcourt, damaging the facility.
“On January 13, 2016 the soldiers and mobile policemen were at ONELGA were they unleashed mayhem on lives and property. The residents of the area are still counting their losses.
“It is imperative to point out that in these three LGAs where Major Mustapha and other illegal security operatives struck, they were accompanied by known APC political thugs and militants who acted as identity operatives. These APC agents who were embedded in these illegal operations were kitted with security uniforms. Despite these security costumes, they were identified by locals.
“This level of political desperation is unknown to the nation’s democratic history. No authority had in the past handed security platforms to political thugs and associates to unleash untold mayhem and death on law abiding citizens.”