June 19, 2024

Rivers crisis: APC begs Tinubu to declare state of emergency

Rivers crisis: APC begs Tinubu to declare state of emergency

…wants armed soldiers posted to sensitive spots

…alleges Rivers at full blown war

…says 3-man Assembly can’t screen CTC chairmen

By Daniel Abia, P/Harcourt

For the second time in less than four months, the All Progressives Congress, APC, Rivers state chapter has called on President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to safe Rivers from gliding into a total anarchy by declaring a state of emergency to save lives and property of Nigerians resident in the state.

APC also wants armed soldiers posted to strategic places across the state to guide against total breakdown of law and order, adding that non-state actors have already been hired from the creeks of the Niger Delta allegedly led by the Chief of staff, Government House, Port Harcourt, Rt. Hon Edison Ehie, to cause serious mayhem on innocent people.

Speaking at a press conference at the APC secretariat in Port Harcourt on Wednesday, the caretaker committee, CTC, Chairman of the party in the state, Chief Tony Okocha, said the call was in good fate to assuage the state from being plunged into further destruction.

He said, “We are in a state of war. And because the governor is unteachable, he does not listen to counsel even the counsel of Mr. President. APC that I represent is demanding for a state of emergency to be declared in Rivers state. It is the way out so that we can live in peace.

“It will be too late to cry when the head is off. The reasons for war, the indices of full blown war are clear. The federal government should do what they should do so that this situation of chaos in Rivers state does not degenerate into where we will be seeing fire everywhere.

“We also know the importance of Rivers state in our national economy. If Rivers state is aflame, our economy as a country will be affected. We must make hays while the sun shines”, he noted.

Okocha who said this few hours after the new CTC chairmen and members for the twenty three local government councils had been screened and sworn-in, argued that three members in the House of Assembly cannot screen the CTC members, saying that such action was an illegality.

“We hear the governor has sworn in chairmen of the councils. Who screened them? Three Assembly members? Supreme Court has made a decision on that matter some time ago when it concerned a governor in Plateau state. It is about the majority of the members of the Assembly.

“What we have in this state is a situation where we have three members of the Assembly. One is speaker, the other one deputy speaker and the third one the majority leader to sponsor government bills. This is a clear illegality. The governor led himself to this quagmire because he refused to listen to counsels.

“We said conduct an election, what is wrong with that? But he wants his own persons to mount the councils. The governor said he could not conduct elections because there was tension in the state. The same governor went round the twenty three local government areas to do thanksgiving and there was no political tension.

“You have seen a video of the Chief of staff to the governor leading thugs to cause mayhem against the people. Police are helpless, even the governor is helpless”.

Okocha wondered why the Governor has refused to conduct proper local government elections but preferred to appoint caretakers to oversee the affairs of the councils which is an aberration.