By Anayo Okoli
ABIA State Government has distanced itself from a trending video of one Felix Kennedy Obisike, an N-power beneficiary in the state, arrested Friday evening by some APC members allegedly with filled result sheets for the shifted Presidential and national assembly elections. APC claimed that the said Obisike was working for the state governor to allegedly rig the election in favour of PDP.
Abia State government has however, in a swift reaction dismissed the allegation by APC as a failed plan by a faction of the APC in the state to confuse the people. The government accused the APC faction of planting the said result sheets in Obisike’s car.
A statement by the State Commissioner of Information, Mr. John Okiyi Kalu said a review of the video and the said result sheets clearly exposed many irregularities and discrepancies, hence described it as mere failed effort to blackmail Kennedy Obisike.
According to Kalu, “elementary review of the published purported INEC result sheet shows that the entries were typed out as against the usual practice of writing out results in long hands, with ink. Only a candidate who has never contested general elections before will attempt to pass off such a poor forgery as INEC result sheet”.
Explaining further, Kalu said that “N-power Social Investment Scheme is a Federal Government program anchored by the office of the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment, Mrs. Maryam Uwais. Her office works with Mr. Chinenye Nwaogu, on the recommendation of our State Governor, as the State’s Focal Person on Social Investment Programs of the Federal Government in Abia State. Mr. Felix Kennedy Obisike is a volunteer beneficiary who is working with a handful of volunteers in the state N-power office.
“When beneficiaries of the program in Abia State received attached short messages purportedly from the office of Mrs. Uwais, inviting them to a meeting at the Campaign Office of Uche Ogah in Umuahia on the 15th of February, 2019, the focal person in the state forwarded the message to Mrs. Uwais to verify the authenticity and she responded that it did not emanate from her or the presidency. On that basis, Mr. Chinenye Nwaogu instructed his assistant, Felix Kennedy Obisike, to send out short messages to the beneficiaries to ignore the invitation.
“As a result of the message sent by Felix, only a handful of the beneficiaries attended the meeting which apparently irked the Uche Ogah team who identified a friend of Mr. Felix in attendance, brutalized and tortured him before using his phone to call Felix and lured him to come to a location near the Uche Ogah Campaign Headquarters to pick his friend up in his car.
“On arrival at the location, armed men from Uche Ogah’s campaign office pounced on Felix, dragged him into their office and brutalized him mercilessly in the presence of a handful of online media persons who apparently were already positioned at the office to witness the unfolding nefarious act. They went to Felix’s car without him and took an official file belonging to his boss (Chinenye) which he was supposed to deliver in Aba same day and apparently planted the fake result sheet inside the file.
“It is important to note that the video published online was edited to make it look like Felix confessed to being the one who owned the fake document whereas he never accepted ownership even under duress. He disowned the fake document and we call on those investigating the matter to invite all those in the office, including the so called media practitioners, and demand to see the whole video in its original form as well as get their statements under oath.
“It was Mr. Chinenye Nwaogu, who got wind of what was happening at Uche Ogah’s campaign office and informed the Abia State office of the Department of State Services, DSS, to move in and rescue Citizen Felix who was apparently struggling for his life at the time as a result of the beatings and torture he went through inside the Uche Ogah Campaign Office in Umuahia.
“The DSS operatives subsequently arrived took Felix into protective custody and are currently giving him medical attention. Unfortunately, nobody in the Uche Ogah Campaign Office has been arrested or invited for questioning as at the time of writing this press release.
“We wish to demand full investigation into the abduction of Citizen Felix Kennedy Obisike and that those involved in this dastardly act be punished according to the laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
“We have also noted other reported acts of violence and threats of unleashing violence on innocent citizens by those associated with the Uche Ogah Campaign Organization as well as the often repeated claims of deploying “federal might” to win election and wish to call on security agents to investigate everyone associated with the campaign organization, from top to bottom, make public their findings and punish those found to be engaged in criminal activities.
“The presidency, especially the office of the Special Adviser to the President on Social Investment, owe Nigerians, especially participants in the N-power program, public explanation on how and why a supposed national program funded with Nigeria tax payers’ money was turned to a political project with participants now corralled and compelled to join the campaign organization of an APC factional candidate in the state or face torture and possible death.
“Allowing desperate political jobbers to engage in open abduction of citizens for any reason negates the recently endorsed peace pact by candidates in the state and we will not stand and do nothing as a responsible Government vested with the constitutional duty of protecting lives and properties of our citizens and residents of the state.
“Relevant security agencies in the state must therefore do the needful with regard to the abduction and torture of Citizen Felix as well as the subsisting threats of unleashing further violence on our people by APC operatives in the state. Abia State Government is ready and committed to taking any and every legal measure to protect our people. The peaceful and accommodating disposition of the Ikpeazu-led administration should not be mistaken for weakness”.