The Governor of Rivers State, Chief Nyesom Wike, last week, imposed a twenty-four hour curfew in Oyigbo Local Government Area of the state.
The curfew also extended to Mile 1, Mile Two, Emenike, Ikokwu, and Iloabuchi parts of Diobu in Port Harcourt City, as well as Oil Mill axis of Obio/Akpor Local Government Area.
The Governor announced the curfew in a state-wide broadcast last Wednesday, at Government House, Port Harcourt, and explained that the decision to impose the curfew was arrived at in a State Security Council meeting held same day in Government House.
In the broadcast, he said that the State Government appreciated the peaceful nature of the #EndSARS protest but regretted that hoodlums later hijacked the protest to unleash carnage in parts of the state.
He said: “ Some hoodlums attacked and destroyed police stations and court buildings in Oyigbo Local Government Area. Another set of hoodlums were also at the Ikokwu Spare Parts Markets, disturbing public peace and damaging property”.
In line with the proscription order of the Federal Government, Governor Wike, last week, reinforced ban on activities of the Indigenous Peoples Organisation of Biafra (IPOB) in the state.
The Governor stated that no form of procession or agitation by the group or any of its affiliates is allowed to take place in the state henceforth.
He explained that the state government observed that the activities of the banned IPOB are not only dangerous to lives and property, but clear threat to the existential interest and aspiration of Rivers State and all her people.
He directed security agencies to stop any form of procession or agitation by IPOB in any part of the state and arrest and prosecute any person or group that identifies with the membership or activities of the banned IPOB, adding that government will issue an executive order to strengthen and ensure effective reinforcement of the measures.
Governor Wike noted with sadness that since the organisation was classified as a terrorist organisation by a Federal High Court and subsequently proscribed by the Federal Government in 2017, the group had carried out intermittently processions in parts of Rivers State, especially Oyigbo and some notorious suburbs in Port Harcourt, stressing that the aim of IPOB had been to disturb the peace of the state by unleashing violence and destruction of lives and property at will.
The State Chief Executive declared one Mr Stanley Mgbere wanted for allegedly leading members of the banned IPOB to cause the recent violence and destruction of lives and property at Onne Community in Eleme Local Government Area.
The Governor announced a ransom of N50million for anybody with useful information that would lead to Mgbere’s arrest and subsequent prosecution.
Another major event in Brick House last week was the inauguration of a Judicial Commission of Inquiry to investigate acts of brutality and violation of fundermental human rights perpetuated by operatives of the disbanded Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in the state.
According to the Governor, the Commission was set up in exercise of the powers conferred on him by the 1999
Constitution as amended and the provisions of Section 2 (1) of the Commission Inquiry Law of Rivers State (Cap 30) Laws of Rivers State of 1999.
He tasked the Commission to identify the victims of the alleged acts of attrocities committed by officers and men of FSARS. It is also to identify the persons or groups who counselled, procured and sponsored alleged acts of violence and violation of human rights of citizens committed by the disbanded outfit in the state.
Members of the Commission were drawn from the Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), FIDA, Youth, Civil Society, Women and Religious organisations and the Commission has 60 days from the date of it’s first sitting to submit its report.
Justice Chukwuneye Uriri (rtd) is the chairman of the Commission.
The Governor also inaugurated the newly reconstituted Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (RSIEC), within the week under review.
Justice George Omereji (rtd) is chairman of the Commission, Dr Doris Ruhuoma Chukwu, Mrs Chioma Ochia, Dr Hope Barango Tariah, Professor Lysias Gilbert, Barrister Barine Akpobari Nwikinanei, Dr Iyeneomie Tamunoberetonari, and Dr Solomon Egbe are members.
Governor Wike also appointed two veteran journalists into key positions. Chief Ernest Chinwo was appointed the General Manager of the Rivers State Newspaper Corporation, while Mr Kelvin Ebiri was appointed Special Assistant (Media) to the Governor.
CVR: Traditional Ruler Tasks INEC On Mass Mobilisation
A traditional ruler in Elele community, in Ikwerre Local Government Area of Rivers State, Chief Mike Elechi, has called on the indigenes of the community and the state to participate in the Continuous Voter’s Registration (CVR) to enable them choose who will govern them in the next general elections.
Sir Elechi also used the opportunity to call on the Independent National Electoral Commission to organise stakeholders meeting in his community, saying that such interactive session would shed more light on the importance of the electoral process.
Elechi stated this in an interview with journalists in his home town over the weekend, saying that the call became imperative following the hardship faced by the citizens as result of bad leadership in the country
The former Permanent Secretary said although he was yet to see the commencement of the exercise in the area, he, stated the need to organise stakeholders meeting by the electoral empire which would achieve the desired objectives.
According to him, INEC has by this exercise provided an opportunity for full participation of those above 18 years who were not registered during the last exercise
The Chief Executive Officer of Vintage Farms, said INEC had provided yet another platform for eligible voters to register and vote out bad government led by the federal government.
“As I urge INEC to carry out adequate sensitization ,it behoves those above 18 years to register and vote and as well be voted for.
“Get your voters card to enable you throw bad governance into the dustbin.
“It will also help us get out where we are now.”
Elechi pointed out that his community has a large number of voters in Ikwerre Local Government area, stressing that concerted efforts should be made to ensure that the exercise was in the area .
By: Akujobi Amadi
Diri Cautions Appointees Over Early Politicking
Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, has cautioned his appointees against early politicking ahead of the 2023 elections, saying he would not hesitate to sack any of them found wanting.
Speaking before commencement of the weekly state Executive Council meeting in Government House Governor Diri frowned on the activities of some of his appointees, which he said were hitting up the polity ahead of the 2023 elections, stressing that it was too early for open politicking.
A statement by the Governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Daniel Alabrah, quoted him as saying despite people having the right to aspire to any political office, the time was not ripe for politicking.
Diri reminded his appointees that the administration lost considerable time last year due to COVID-19 and needless litigations, stressing that it was in a hurry to deliver on its campaign promises and would not afford to waste time politicking.
He wondered why appointees would be involved in open politicking when the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had not even released a timetable for elections.
The state helmsman urged members of his cabinet interested in open politicking at this time, especially those from Bayelsa West Senatorial District, to resign or be ready to be sacked.
He called on all those involved in the early politicking to immediately withdraw and follow the directives of his administration, saying his government was not ready for politics at this time.
“I find it very difficult to believe that appointees in this government have already started open politicking.
“Yes, it is the constitutional right of anybody to contest but even the Bible tells us that there is time for everything. At this time, we are trying to stamp our feet to meet up our campaign promises to our people.”
“I hereby caution all those involved to immediately withdraw. If you are prepared to continue with this government, you must listen to the music of this administration. We are not prepared to start politicking from this year”, he said.
Meanwhile, Governor Diri has also sworn in two new Special Advisers.
They are, Alabo Ozubide, Special Adviser, Legal Matters, and Onuma Johnson, Special Adviser on Non-Indigenes.
While congratulating them, he said their appointments were based on merit and in line with his campaign promises, charging them to avoid friction with commissioners,just as he reiterated that their cooperation with commissioners would deliver development to the people of the state.
“We promised that when elected, we would appoint a Special Adviser from among non-ndigenes. This appointment is in fulfilment of that promise. We believe that you will be able to synergise and gather non-indigenes together.
“Often, we see role conflicts between special advisers and commissioners that duty bound to implement government policies. You as special advisers should cooperate with them,” he said.
By: Ariwera Ibibo-Howells, Yenagoa
PDP Urges Nigerians To Embrace E-Registration Of Members
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged Nigerians to embrace in its online membership registration scheduled to begin in August.
The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr Kola Ologbondiyan made the appeal during a news conference on Wednesday in Abuja.
Ologbondiyan urged Nigerians to visit www.iampdp.com for the online registration at the comfort of their homes.
He also expressed delight over requests from Nigerians and the interests they were already showing for the online registration.
Ologbondiyan urged Nigerians to come to PDP and own the process.
The PDP spokesman also commended Nigerians on the way they embraced the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) online ongoing Continuous Voter Registration (CVR).
He said “PDP is happy to hear the INEC saying no fewer than one million Nigerians have completed their online pre-registration.”
Ologbondiyan said the way Nigerians embraced the CVR showed they were dissatisfied with governance in the country and ready for 2023.
He urged Nigerians of voting age and those yet to register for Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) to continue with the CVR.
He said “We appeal to those who are educated, especially members of the PDP to encourage others to participate in the ongoing CVR.”
Ologbondiyan also urged Nigerians to register to enable them to vote, pointing out that people should know it is their rights to vote.
Asked how PDP would conduct its e-registration with the Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) recent comment on Nigeria network covered, Ologbondiyan said as far as PDP was concerned, every part of Nigeria had network coverage.
“From the information we have received from all our members across the 36 states and across the 774 local governments area of the country, there is no where that we have received a report that they cannot carry out online registration.
“Even INEC has come out to say that they have no problems with online registration.
“We are happy that INEC has come out to reveal that not less than one million Nigerians have so far participated in the Continuous Voters’ Registration exercise of the commission,” he said.
On inquiry over the role of the National Assembly members on electronic transmission of election results, he said the party would meet its members in the National Assembly to review their participation.
He said “The PDP is calling a meeting between the party and caucus in the National Assembly to review the participation of members in the legislative activity of the National Assembly as it concerns the voting on transmission of results.”
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