Apparently rattled by the seeming weighty allegation of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Rivers State that the All Progressives Congress (APC) is plotting to violently subvert elections in the state, APC says they are not planning such.
But Ambassador Desmond Akawor, the Director-General of the PDP Campaign Council in the state had alleged that President Muhammadu Buhari’s APC was plotting to violently prevent the general elections from holding in the big oil state.
Akawor who was spoke in Port Harcourt, the state capital, said last January 23, some leaders of the APC addressed a world press conference wherein they issued a direct and specific public threat to the effect that:
…there will be no National Assembly, Governorship and state House of Assembly elections in Rivers until all the cases pending before various courts have gone to the apex court for final decisions…
According to him, this February 7, ‘’a senior chieftain of the APC Prince Tonye Princewill issued another threat on behalf of the APC asserting that the party will prevent the general elections from holding in Rivers.’’ Princewill claimed that it will be lawful to be lawless if the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) failed to unlawfully include the APC and its candidates in Rivers on the ballot.
The APC chief had declared to Daily Post, there will be no elections in Rivers. With no reaction from the security agencies, ‘’Transportation Minister and Director General of the APC Presidential Campaign Council, Chibuike Amaech,i yet again renewed the APC’s threat at its presidential campaign rally in Port Harcourt and arrogantly promised to deal with the Governor of Rivers and the PDP’’, Akawor said..
After giving a graphic detail of how APC intends to carry out their alleged subversive bid, the envoy warned: ‘’No one has the monopoly of violence. We have the capacity and the will to mobilise our teaming supporters to resist intimidation and defend the collective rights of our people in Rivers to effectively participate in the democratic process and frustrate those who are bent on denying our democratic rights, as expressly guaranteed by our constitution.’’
However, the State Publicity Secretary of the accused party, Chris Finebone, has stoutly denied allegation of APC plotting to scuttle elections in Rivers. He told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Wednesday in Port Harcourt that the accusation by the PDP was a mere imagination.
He also said that the allegation that the Transportation Minister, Chibuike Amaechi was holding secret meetings in Abuja and strategising to disrupt elections in the state was another mere imagination by PDP.
“Well, the claim by PDP that the Minister for Transportation, Mr Rotimi Amaechi, is holding any meeting whatsoever, dwells only in the infantile imagination of the PDP characters behind such outlandish allegation,” he said.
NAN reports that PDP, during a media briefing on Tuesday, accused APC of conniving with the security agencies and employing other undemocratic strategies to scuttle elections in parts of the state.
Finebone urged the public not to take the accusation serious, adding that it was a deliberate attempt to discredit APC and to dissuade its teaming supporters: ‘’Rivers PDP is doing exactly what the Holy Bible refers to as the guilty running when no one is pursuing. We hereby warn PDP to desist from maligning innocent members of APC who have done nothing wrong, whatsoever.’’