The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Campaign Council in Rivers State has accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) and security agencies, particularly the 6 Division, Nigerian Army in Port Harcourt, of plots to cause crisis and disrupt the general elections in the State.
In a press briefing at the Council’s headquarters, in Port Harcourt, Director General of PDP Campaign Organization, Ambassador Desmond Akawor, said comments attributed to some chieftains of APC and actions of the Army were indications they had perfected plans to disrupt the elections, so that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) can cancel Rivers polls.
Akawor expressed worries over the desperation of APC to truncate the elections in the state, alleging that security agencies were plotting to arrest and detain PDP chieftains till after the elections.
He said: “The purpose of this press conference is to draw the attention of Nigerians and the international community to the plot and brazen determination of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to violently prevent the general elections from holding in Rivers State and scuttle the rights of our people to freely and fairly elect their leaders on the February 23 and March 9, 2019.
“For instance, on Friday 15 February 2019, 24 hours to the now rescheduled presidential and National Assembly elections, the APC-led Federal Government deployed full military arsenal to cordon off, overrun and prevent voters and normal residents from getting to the Local Government Areas of Akuku Toru, Andoni, Asari Toru, Bonny, Degema, Okrika and Opobo/Nkoro.
“On January 23, 2019, 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 State until all the cases pending before various courts have gone to the apex court for final decisions.’
“We have started witnessing concerted efforts by the APC, INEC and the security agencies, especially the Nigerian Army and the Police, to actualize both the intent and content of the dangerous agenda of the APC to truncate the electoral processes in the State, as we get closer to the election dates”, the PDP Campaign DG stated.
In a swift reaction, spokesman of APC in the state, Chris Finebone stated that: “The attention of our party, the APC, has been drawn to a long litany of lies placed in the public space by the Rivers State Chapter of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in which several outlandish falsehood were bandied as truth.
“We can only summarise that the PDP in Rivers State is doing exactly what the Holy Bible referred to as the guilty running when no one is pursuing.
“We hereby warn the PDP to desist from maligning innocent members of the APC who have done nothing wrong whatsoever.
“We believe that the Nigerian military, whom the PDP has unfortunately chosen to malign, blackmail and insult, can adequately speak for itself.
“However, we must caution the PDP that our gallant soldiers, who place their lives on the line every other day to protect us, deserve a better treatment than the PDP have chosen to embark upon.
The headquarters of the 6 Division, Nigerian Army (NA), has vowed to be ruthless to persons that would attempt to disrupt elections in the state.
The Deputy Director, Army Public Relations, Colonel Aminu Iliyasu, gave the warning in a statement he issued in Port Harcourt.