February 8, 2023

Attack on PDP Chieftains: Our supporters will be forced to protect themselves if – Stakeholders

…more houses vandalized , looted

…CP has visited
Akpabuyo LGA to assess situation…PPRO

…I have no hand in such barbarism…Dep. Speaker

By Ike Uchechukwu, CALABAR

Leaders of the Peoples Democratic party PDP in Akpabuyo and Southern Senatorial Districts in Cross River have raised the alarm over what they described as unabated destruction and looting of members houses in the area.

They said they can no longer guarantee the continued patience of their supporters if nothing was done to protect them as they may be forced to protect themselves.

Recall that Vanguard had earlier reported the vandalism of eight houses belonging to Chieftains of the PDP including the house of Organizing Secretary of the Party in the state, Hon Francis Ekeng by suspected thugs and members of the APC loyal the the deputy Speaker , Hon Joseph Bassey.

In a press statement signed by leader of PDP in the area, Sir Arthur Jarvis Archibong , the leaders stated that the current unabated attacks on their members in the area began shortly after the candidate of the APC for the Calabar South/Akpabuyo and Bakassi Federal Constituency Hon. Joseph Bassey and other APC leaders held a meeting on Sunday 5th February, 2023 at Ikot Oyom, Akpabuyo.

“At about 8.15pma team of miscreants started destroying billboards of PDP candidates displayed within the private residence of Mr. Amanso Okon Etim, the Chapter Youth Leader of PDP at Atimbo. They did not stop at that, they went on to break into house and destroyed his household property amongst other things that were vandalized.

“We brought of these unwarranted attacks and provocation to the attention of the authorities by writing to the State Police commissioner ,AIG, Zone 6 and the DSS (Copies of our speak, nothing has been done to abet these acts of terrorism.

“No single security team has been deployed to the area. These hoodlums are now having an unhindered environment to attack innocent residents of the area.

” We are aware of the plans of the APC leadership and their collaborators to provoke our supporters into a retaliation so that they can find reasons to deploy their usual boastful power of incumbency and use security agents to arrest and detain our supporters before the forthcoming elections.

“That is why we have consistently prevailed on our supporters not to react.

We are hereby calling on the Security Agencies to urgently take actions to secure lives and property in the area and also arrest those who have been identified and reported to them as the perpetrators of these wicked acts.

“We cannot guarantee the continued patience of our supporters if nothing is done to protect them as they may be forced to protect themselves.

“We call on the leaders of the APC in the state and Akpabuyo LGA who are the sponsors of these acts of brigandage to stop forthwith as we are prepared for a peaceful elections,” he stated.

When contacted , the Police Public Relations Officer, SP Irene Ugbo told Vanguard that the Commissioner of Police, CP Sule Balarabe visited the area on Wednesday and men would be deployed to the place immidiately.

“The Commissioner of Police visited the place this morning and would deploy men to the area as soon as possible .

“We are calling on all parties involved to remain calm , in as much as we want peace , the police won’t allow the wanton destruction of property or breach of peace in any form , ” she warned.

On his part, the Deputy Speaker CRSHA , Hon. Joseph Bassey has denied any involvement on the
attack and that at no time did he send anybody to cause havock on anyone.

Bassey who is the All Progressives Congress (APC) House of Representatives candidate for Calabar South/Akpabuyo/Bakassi Federal Constituency explained that he had always played followed due process as it concerns politics.

“I am not from Akpabuyo neither do I have boys there, I only go to Akpabuyo whenever I am invited and it was such invitation I honoured on Sunday to inaugurate my campaign office in the area that was donated by one of my supporters.

“Those claiming that I am responsible for the attack have nothing to say. I am against
violence and thuggery in politics and Cultism ,” Bassey Said.