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PDP, APC Bicker Over Alleged Polls’ Disruption Plot

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The Peoples Democratic Party ( PDP) has accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) of orchestrating violence across the country, with intention to disrupt the conduct of the 2023 general elections.
Spokesperson of the party, Debo Ologunagba, at a press conference, Wednesday, in Abuja, decried the upsurge in attacks on facilities of the Independent National Electoral Commission ( INEC), saying the masterminds sought to frustrate the electoral umpire from conducting next year’s polls.
He said intelligence at the disposal of the opposition party indicated that attacks on INEC facilities were aimed at preventing newly registered voters from collecting their  Permanent Voter’s Card (PVCs), destroying  the PVCs, as well as cripple the capacity of INEC to conduct free elections.
Ologunagba alleged that there was a nexus between the charge by the APC presidential candidate, Bola Tinubu, to his supporters in London, that power is not served a la carte and the increase in attacks on INEC facilities.
He recalled that the APC candidate,  in a closed-door meeting in London with his supporters,  earlier this month said: “Political power is not going to be served in a restaurant, it is not served a la carte. It is what we are doing, it is being determined, you do it at all cost, fight for it, grab it, snatch it and run with it.”
The PDP said in response to this directive, APC leaders and members have activated plots to derail the electoral process through orchestrated violent attacks in various states of the country.
The party said the target was to trigger a nationwide security emergency situation, instil fear and make it appear in-conducive to conduct elections in the country.
“Part of the plot is the current attacks on the facilities of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in various parts of the country as witnessed in Ogun, Osun and Imo States where sections critical to the conduct of elections, particularly, those connected to the collection of Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs) were targeted and destroyed. Also, our party has been made aware of plans by the APC to orchestrate attacks in other states, particularly, Kogi and Delta, some states of the South East as well as parts of the North with the view to subverting the electoral process in as many states as possible.
“The design it to create tension across the country to validate a narrative that elections cannot hold, then orchestrate a constitutional crisis with a view to justifying a shifting of the elections and perpetuate certain APC elements in office beyond May 29, 2023.”
The opposition spokesman, while calling on the security agencies to investigate the APC over the attacks on INEC offices, noted that Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, INEC boss, stated recently that if attacks on its offices continue till January and February, the commission may not be able to recover from them.
“The PDP, therefore, alerts the security agencies to take immediate steps to investigate and stop the APC on its vicious plot to derail our democratic process. The PDP again demands that President Muhammadu Buhari should call Asiwaju Tinubu and his party members to order so that Nigerians can peacefully choose their next president through a free, fair, transparent and credible electoral process.
“The choice of who becomes the president of Nigeria rests on the will of the people through the free exercise of their votes and the APC presidential candidate should come to terms with the resolve of Nigerians to vote in the PDP candidate, Atiku Abubakar as the next president,” PDP said.
But in a swift reaction, the APC-PCC urged law enforcement agencies to immediately invite leaders of the PDP for questioning.
The APC PCC, in a statement by Festus Keyamo, Director of Public Affairs and chief spokesperson, Tinubu/Shettima PCC read: “We note with concern the incoherent and convoluted press statement issued by the ethically-challenged PDP, yet again raising alarm about certain plots to incite violence and derail the 2023 polls and having ‘credible information’ as to those unleashing violence in certain parts of the country.
“This statement, coming just barely 48 hours after one of its former officials was convicted by a court of law over illegal acts committed during an election over which the PDP government presided is just a pointer to the lowest level of moral debauchery to which the PDP has sunk.
“It operates without an iota of shame or respect for the Nigerian people. Instead of continuous apologies for those grievous acts of election rigging, money-laundering and other electoral malpractices, it continues to pontificate.
“Based on its latest statement about having ‘credible information’ about certain individuals plotting to derail the 2023 elections, including acts of arson already perpetrated on the facilities of INEC, we therefore call on the law-enforcement agencies to, as a matter of urgency, invite the PDP leaders for immediate questioning. The PDP must provide information regarding: The place and time such a meeting took place and those in attendance. The identities of those who committed these acts of arson on the facilities of INEC. The information must also include the identity of those who sponsored these individuals (if any),” it charged.
Reacting further, the APC PCC wrote; “The PDP should realise that an electioneering process is very serious business and not a time to issue baseless and infantile statements out of want of something to say to the Nigerian people. The Nigerian people have since grown weary of the antics of the PDP.”

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Rivers Crisis: PDP Chairman Hails Jonathan’s Call For Truce

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The Lagos State chapter Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Philip Aivoji, has described former President Goodluck Jonathan’s call to end the political crisis in Rivers as commendable.
Mr Aivoji commended Jonathan  in an interview with The Tide‘s source on Monday in Lagos.
Recall that Jonathan had on Monday implored Governor Siminalayi Fubara of Rivers  and his predecessor, (the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, FCT) Chief Nyesom Wike, to sheathe their swords in order to douse the political temperature in the state.
The former president, who spoke at the inauguration of the N222.1 billion Trans-Kalabari Road construction, emphasised the necessity for Fubara and Wike to collaborate to promote the  progress and prosperity of Rivers State.
He noted that the political tension in the state was excessive and worrisome, and would not contribute to  development.
Jonathan said that destabilising Rivers State would adversely impact the Niger Delta region and could also trigger crises across the country.
Reacting to Jonathan’s admonition, Mr Aivoji described the former President as a man full of experience in mediation and conflict resolution, even at the international level.
“Jonathan is a leader in the party and a leader from South South; there is nothing wrong stepping in to broker peace. It is a good one,” the PDP boss said.
He, however, said that the former President should go further to speak the truth to the warring parties and point out  to each of them where they had erred.
“This is the way to settle issues. If we want to resolve it, we must tell the truth to them.
“The ex-President is an elder, he is an experienced person, who has been meditating in international affairs. Let us see how it goes,” he added.
According to him, the former President, being experienced mediator, must dig deep and probe the cause of the crisis.
“He (Jonathan) has seen it all. Peace of graveyard will not help the matter, they should resolve issues.
“We hope that the nitty-gritty will be looked into and the constitution of the party will be followed if they are true members of the party,” Aivoji said.

 

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Group Carpets Amaewhule Over Political Crisis In Rivers 

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A group, Coalition of Rivers State Leaders of Thought (CORSLOT) has blamed the former Speaker of the Rivers State House of Assembly, Rt Hon. Martins Amaewhule, for the escalation of the political crisis in the State.
The coalition, which stated this at a media briefing in Port Harcourt, said Rivers State would not have been in its current political situation had Rt Hon Amaewhule played the sacred role providence bestowed on him.
The text for the briefing which was read by the Convener, High Chief Sunnie Chukumele, and co-signed by Prof (Mrs) Reginah Azunwena, Odinaka Osundu, George Ijoma and Elder Anuage Menegbo, also commended Governor Siminalayi Fubara for his peaceful disposition despite the crisis, adding that this disposition has marked the governor as a man of peace.
“Pitiably under him, the world saw a legislative arm of government that was vehemently out to frustrate the executive arm with all sorts of negative actions against the governor and the government of Rivers State.
“Had Martins Amaewhule seen the state as sacred, he would have mediated in whatever were the issues between our former governor, His Excellency, Chief (Barrister) Nyesom Wike. Amaewhule failed woefully to play a stabilizing role which his exalted office gave him ample role to play”, they said.
The Coalition also called on former Governor Nyesom Wike to have a rethink on the political crisis in the state as he has a cardinal role to play in the resolution of the impasse.
“CORSLOT wishes to advise trouble entrepreneurs and eye service politicians of Rivers State origin to take note that power belongs to God Almighty and the people.
“Rivers people are taking note of these political actors.
“Rivers State is owned by Rivers people and not  self seeking politicians”, they said.
“We begin by appreciating the governor of Rivers State, Sir Siminalaye Fubara, for working assiduously for peace by embracing and working with the Presidential Peace Accord of 2023 and to state that it is in recognition of this that the governor has won awards and honours within the state and Nigeria”
The Coalition also thanked the Governor for attending to the needs and welfare of citizens of the state, particularly the welfare of civil servants and the planned employment into the Civil Service.
“CORSLOT further recognizes the governor’s attention on infrastructural development in the state with his continuation of projects he inherited from previous administrations and indeed his bold initiatives of new ones.
These come with spiraling advantages”, they added.
They also urged the governor to take immediate steps to fill his cabinet with men and women who have the capacity to add value to the State.

By: John Bibor

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Council Boss Hails Fubara Over Successful Project Commissioning

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Following the successful commissioning of the  Andoni Section of the Ogoni-Andoni- Opobo Unity Road by Rivers State Governor, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, the Chairman of Opobo/Nkoro Local Government Area, Hon. Enyiada Cookey-Gam has commended the number one citizen of the state for his multiple  infrastructural development projects that have direct bearings on the lives and well -being of Rivers people, especially in NgoTown, headquarters of Andoni Local Government Area and its adjoining environs.
The Chairman maintained that the road, as commissioned, will provide connectivity between coastal communities, cities, and hinterlands, facilitating the movement of people, goods and services, which enhances trade, commerce and tourism, and also contributes to local economic development and the local government area’s internally generated revenue (IGR).
On the event, Hon. CookeyGam lauded the efforts of the initiator of the project, 24 years ago, Dr.Peter Odili, former governor of Rivers State, for his determination and love for the people that found expression in the initiation of the Unity Road project which has been able to connect the catchment local government areas of Khana, Andoni and Opobo/ Nkoro, including the neighbouring states.
He described both Dr. Odili and Governor Fubara as beacons of infrastructural development.
The Chairman of Council also urged Andoni people to guard against vandalization and theft of the facilities that have been put in place for their betterment.
He further admonished the people of Andoni in particular, and Rivers people in general, to support the good work the Governor has come to do despite distraction from some politicians in the state who do not mean well for the people.

By: Bethel Toby

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