Crisis Tears Rivers PDP Apart…Police Save Party Secretariat From Being Burnt
The Peoples Democratic (PDP) in Rivers state is being torn apart by the governorship ambition of former Minister of state for education, Nyesom Wike as some suspected aggrieved members of the party earlier today attempted to burn down the party secretariat located at No, 23 Aba road, Port Harcourt.
This is coming less than 24 hours after over 15 PDP governorship aspirants , opposed to Wike’s ambition, held what they called, “Power must change in Rivers rally” at the Liberation stadium, Port Harcourt. It was learnt that the suspected arsonists stormed the party secretariat at about 5am local time, armed with kegs of petrol with which they set the building ablaze.
Two mobile policemen, on guard duty inside the building were however said to have been awakened by the fire and raised the alarm that attracted help before the fire did so much damage to the building.
The suspects quickly escaped while the security men mobilized neighbours and passers-by who helped in putting out the fire. One the security men, who claimed to be outside the building when the suspected arsonists arrived the area, said he tried to prevent them, but they still succeeded pouring fuel on the burglar -proof at the entrance before setting it on fire.
Reacting to the incident, the State Chairman of the party, Chief Felix Obuah, said it was the handiwork of those he described as, desperate governorship aspirants, dissidents, expelled and suspended members of the party.
His statement reads: “The Rivers State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP strongly condemns failed attempt by political mercenaries, using combustible substance to set its State Secretariat, along Aba Road in Port Harcourt, ablaze in the early hours of today, Friday, October 31, 2014.
“In the early hours of today, some group of boys invaded the State Secretariat of the PDP, locked the Security guards at the premises, poured petroleum product (fuel) on the two storey building which ignited fire that could not create positive impact on the ground floor of the PDP State Secretariat.
“The Party expresses serious concern and suspicion on the manner and timing of the event which occurred just less than 24 hours after a group of dissidents comprising a handful of expelled and suspended members of the Party and mixed with agents and members of the All Progressives Congress, who sparsely congregated at the liberation stadium, Elekahia, during which they threatened violence on the PDP and its leaders, as some of them called for the postponement of the ward congresses of the party billed for tomorrow Saturday.
“The Party also notes that few minutes after the unfortunate incident of arson on its Party Secretariat, in a manner that suggested that they are privy to the arrangement, and what looks like an already prepared press statement, waiting for the incident to occur, the Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressives Congress, APC, through one Chris Finebone, issued a press statement and laid claim to the property as belonging to the Rivers State Government.
“It appears to us that they either masterminded it or wanted the property razed down to claim the land, since according to them; it belongs to the Rivers State Government. It is also obvious that the APC elements are determined to make the State ungovernable only to blackmail members of our great Party, the PDP.
“The Rivers State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP hereby calls on the Inspector General of Police, IGP, the Rivers State Commissioner of Police, and all relevant security agencies in the country to invite for interrogation, Chris Finebone and organizers of the ill fated rally on Thursday at Liberation Stadium, Port Harcourt, who have already been revealed by Mr Finebone as those behind the dastardly act. Mr. Chris Finebone, had in a Press Statement in which he signed as State Publicity Secretary said, “their evil scheme has finally become public knowledge early this morning as men of the Rivers State Government Fire Service are battling to contain the fire at the PDP State Secretariat ostensibly carried out by a faction of the party”.
“The organizers of the ill fated rally having failed to achieve their aim of calling off the ward congresses, have resorted to intimidation and violence.
“We also call on whoever is linked to this dastardly incident and politicians to search their conscience and that politics should not be seen as a do or die affair. It is important that we engage ourselves with respect and regard for the growth and development of our dear State even as we strive to place the interest of Rivers State beyond parochial, egocentric, jingoist and wishy-washy interest.
“The PDP however, wishes to restate that no amount of intimidation, attacks and blackmail would discourage the Party from doing what is just, fair and equitable, by allowing all eminently qualified and interested members of the Party to contest all levels of elections on the platform of the Party, irrespective of ethnicity.
“The PDP also enjoins everybody to come to the primaries to test their popularity and desist from violent actions and uncomplimentary remarks against the Party. I, Bro Felix Obuah, chairman PDP Rivers State hereby allay fears over the conduct of the Local Government congresses billed for tomorrow Saturday November 1, 2014, assuring party faithful that the ward congresses would hold in all wards in Rivers State as scheduled.”
The Party expressed sincere appreciation to the Rivers State Commissioner of Police, Dan Bature, for vising the Party Secretariat to assess the level of destruction on the building. During the visit, the CP, who was received on arrival by the State Secretary of the Party, Prince Ibibia Walter, assured 24 hours security at the Party Secretariat.
Also reacting, the ruling APC in the state said “It is with sombre heart filled with sadness that the Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress [APC] received the gory news that the in-fighting in the Rivers State chapter of the PDP has snowballed into the setting on fire of one of the prime properties of the government and people of Rivers State which serves as the state secretariat of the PDP.
“The APC recalls that it warned Rivers people that there is a calculated attempt by the powers that be to first of all strangulate Rivers State economically and socially and then finally set it on fire to complete their strategic plan to politically and physically obliterate Rivers State from the Nigerian map. Their evil scheme has finally become public knowledge early this morning as men of the Rivers State Government Fire Service are battling to contain the fire at the PDP state secretariat ostensibly carried out by a faction of the party.
“The APC would like to urge well-meaning Rivers people to immediately intervene and prevent our dear state from being burnt down and destroyed by evil men who want political power as a matter of life and death.”
Do not hesitate to leave your opinion in the comment section below.
To contact Abusidiqu.com for Article Submission and Advertisement or General inquiry, send a mail to email@example.com