By PRECIOUS IBINABO DAVIDS, Port Harcourt
Rivers State All Progressives Congress (APC) has described as unfortunate, condemnable and unacceptable the vandalization of her Secretariat by party members loyal to Senator Magnus Abe one of the party’s chieftains.
The party in a statement made available to journalist in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on 10th May, 2018 by Chief Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, the Media Consultant to Dr Davies Ibiamu Ikanya, the State Chairman of Rivers APC noted with sadness that certain party members for no justifiable reasons vandalised the party’s State Secretariat in such a manner that makes both the State Chairman and members of the State working Committee (SWC) operate under the harsh weather within the secretariat instead of their offices.
Chief Eze explained that Rivers State APC immediately after the vandalisation of her secretariat set up a three-man Stock-Taking Committee, comprising of Barr Amachree the Administrative Secretary of the party as Chairman with Chief Emeka Bekee the party’s Secretary as Secretary of the committee and Pastor Mason West (IB), PA to Dr Ikanya as a member to ascertain the level of damage and suggest how to curtail such unruly behaviour among party members in future. The committee is also expected to investigate and assist the security agencies to ascertain those behind this heinous act.
Continuing, the statement noted that, “the indictment of Senator Magnus Abe and his supporters according to the preliminary Report of the committee was based on the careful study of the events during the occupation of the State Secretariat by party members loyal to Senator Abe and confession made by some of his supporters in Police custody. The committee states that it is foolhardy to deny the fact that Abe’s supporters vandalised the Secretariat as an attempt to derail internal democracy and disrupt the Ward Congresses of the party as their actions suggest that they don’t want the Congresses to hold in the first place.”
The statement reads in part: “The Committee further suggested that the threatening and instigating utterances of Prince Peter Odike the State APC Vice Chairman and the party Youth Leader while addressing Abe’s supporters on that fateful day prepared the ground for the unfortunate vandalization of the State Secretariat.
The committee’s report also stated that Abe’s statement that he shares the same view with those that gathered at the State Secretariat gives strength to the committee’s findings.
Throwing more light on this heinous act of attempting to denial internal democracy during the Congresses, Senator Andrew Uchendu stated thus, “Supporters of Senator Magnus Abe invaded the Rivers APC Secretariat before the sales of forms and arrival of the Ward and LGA Congresses Committee from APC National Secretariat in Abuja, just to make sure that elections will not hold.”
On the vandalization of her Secretariat, the party quoted, Chief Victor Giadom the National Asst Secretary as saying that, the action of the hoodlums that vandalised Rivers State secretariat of APC in Port Harcourt was unnecessary, highly regrettable and it was the height of desperation by Abe and his supporters. We are all from Rivers State and we know the thugs who were at APC secretariat last Friday. The representative of Ikwerre/Emohua in the House of Representatives, Chidi Wihioka, who was arrested on the scene of the destruction, is also a supporter of Abe.”
On the issue of no Congresses election in Rivers State, the party asks that if there was no Ward Congresses election in Rivers State as Senator Abe and others are claiming, what was Prince Peter Odike the APC Vice Chairman doing at his ward on that fateful day to warrant Senator Abe to have thundered, “I was ashamed when I heard the State Vice Chairman of the APC, Chief Peter Odike, who is loyal to me being embarrassed and chased out of the congress venue in his Ward yesterday”?
The party maintained that from the various picture footages and videos showing that there was election in Rivers State, it sounds ridiculous for any party member to state otherwise. Affirming this, Chief Victor Giadom the National Asst Secretary of APC stated thus, “I was in Bera (Abe’s village) on Saturday and the ward congress was peacefully and orderly conducted, just as it happened in all 23 LGAs.”
While to the Chairman of the Ward Congress Committee of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State, Mr. Joseph Dago, “Based on what I said, there was election. I don’t know where there is a contradiction between an allegation and a fact. If there is an allegation and a fact, I don’t know how contradictory it is. From the report that was documented, including the one from the distinguished senator’s ward, we will make available to the press documented evidence that even in his ward, there was election. So, the issue of a contradiction does not even arise because you cannot be talking about contradiction when there is an allegation and a fact.”
The party maintained that with all these facts, it becomes mischievous and wicked for any party member to continue to portray the party in bad light.
Dr Ikanya the Rivers State APC Chairman wept profusely while receiving the preliminary report and stated that he can’t understand how and why people who have sacrificed so much in building the party could resort to acts capable of derailing and sabotaging the ideals and vision of the party in the State just because of struggle for power.
The State Chairman urged the committee to conclude her report and suggest possible means of how to unite the party chieftains that aided this criminal act against the party and proffer suggestions on how to prevent such act in future.
Dr Ikanya further stated that, “politics is not a do or die venture but means through which we submit ourselves for services to humanity and not means to disparage or destroy ourselves”
“The party notes with sadness that a Congress affirmed to be peaceful, credible and organised in the best democratic practices by both the Dago led national Committee and Independent Observers could be described by some party officials and members as “no election”. The party therefore warned all those who have continued to present the party in bad light before the public to cease as the party has relevant portions of her constitution to deal with such group of people no matter how highly placed they may be.”
Finally, the party urges those going for the Local Government Congresses to peacefully conduct themselves to demonstrate to the PDP government in Rivers State that their time is up.