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p13 Rivers rerun crisis: APC faults release of suspects From Victor Edozie, Port Harcourt The Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has…


Rivers rerun crisis: APC faults release of suspects

From Victor Edozie, Port Harcourt

The Rivers State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) has expressed worry over the release of the aides of Governor Nyesom Wike who were arrested over alleged malpractices and violence during the state and National Assembly rerun elections in the state.

The party also faulted the release of some of the governor’s aides who allegedly made attempt to assassinate the Director General of the Nigerian Maritime Administration and Safety Agency (NIMASA), Dr. Dakuku Peterside, the state APC Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya and the party’s deputy governorship candidate in the 2015 elections, Hon. Asita O. Asita.

The APC wondered how all the suspects were allowed to go home and continue with their normal businesses, despite the sensitivity of the allegations against them.

The party in a statement yesterday, signed by its chairman, Davis Ikanya, said, “We are shocked and left speechless by the speed with which the Secretary to Rivers State Government, Mr. Kenneth Kobani, Wike’s Special Assistant on Special Projects, Mr. Cyril Dum Wite, and Wike’s Chief of Staff, Emeka Woke, were released and allowed to go home despite the overwhelming evidence against them.”

The APC had alleged that Mr. Kobani was caught violating electoral laws during the Saturday, March 19 rerun.

“Gunmen operating in two jeeps belonging to Wike opened fire on a vehicle conveying Peterside, Ikanya and Asita, who were on their way from Port Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa.

“Our hopes were initially raised when Wike’s implicated aides were arrested for questioning as we thought that justice would be made to take its course. We are disappointed that these men have been hastily released and left off the hook, instead of being vigorously investigated and charged before courts of competent jurisdiction. This is sad and unfortunate,” the release stated.

The party challenged security agencies in the state to conduct their activities in a way that would convince everyone of their impartiality and also advised them not to allow themselves to be bought by desperate politicians.

It described the rerun elections as a violence-ridden sham and demanded its total cancellation by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

Sheriff’s tenure won’t go beyond May – Jalo

By Saawua Terzungwe

Deputy national publicity secretary of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Barrister Abdullahi Jalo, has said the tenure of the party’s national chairman, Sen. Ali Modu Sheriff, will not be extended beyond May, this year.

Jalo said it would be against the decision of the National Executive Committee (NEC) of the PDP, which approved that Sheriff should be in the saddle for three months within which to organise a national convention already slated for May 21, 2016, to elect new leaders of the party.

Jalo, in a text message to our correspondent, said he was astonished that some groups were calling for tenure elongation for Sheriff, who he added, was only completing the tenure of the erstwhile chairman, Alhaji Adamu Mu’azu, who threw in the towel in May, last year.

“One is surprised why the South-west PDP that visited the national chairman will issue a statement canvassing tenure elongation for Sheriff at this crucial time,” he said.

Jalo was one of the aspirants for the position of the party’s national chairman when it became vacant.

Attah Igala urges Buhari on change in Kogi

From Itodo Daniel Sule, Lokoja

The Attah Igala and chairman of the Kogi State Traditional Council of Chiefs, Dr Idakwo Michael Ameh Oboni II, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to begin his change mantra in Kogi State.

The Attah, who spoke at the weekend in Idah, during the celebration of his third anniversary on the throne, lamented that the Igala nation in particular and Kogi State at large, had collectively suffered many years of marginalisation due to structural imbalance.

The paramount ruler said he believed that President Buhari, being a man with track record of honesty and fair play, would help in correcting all political and socio-economic ills suffered by any segment of the country.

“This new change mantra is what we believe will bring our nation out of the woods. The current change mantra of the federal government should focus more attention on Kogi State in general and the Eastern senatorial district (Igala land) in particular.

“Whatever changes occur in the nation, without adequately addressing the structural and socio-political deficiencies suffered in Igala land since the amalgamation of the country in 1914, will be grossly inadequate and an exercise in futility, hence my clarion call on all Igalas is to come together and talk with a united voice,” he said.

The Attah said the Igala nation had over the years suffered injustice in terms of distribution of political appointments at the national level, adding that its people deserved more than they had gotten.

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