Disturbed by the continued harassment and last week’s detention of Mrs. Gesila Khan, the Rivers State Resident Electoral Commissioner by the Department of State Security Services, DSS, in Abuja, her family has accused the Federal Government of witch-hunting her.
Khan was quizzed by the DSS on issues bothering on her role in the last governorship and National Assembly elections, which the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP candidates won in the state.
Although some of the cases on the election are before two election petitions tribunals sitting in Abuja instead of Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, the DSS invited Khan and detained her to obtain more information on the conduct of the polls.
In their reaction yesterday, Khan’s family lamented that during her visit to DSS in Abuja, she was detained, harassed, intimidated and subjected to inhuman treatments.
The family attributed the REC’s ordeal to the visit of former Rivers State governor, Rotimi Amaechi to the DSS office.
In a statement issued by Mr. Okubama Johnbull on behalf of the REC’s family, he said:
“The family of Mrs. Gesila Ekiotonye Okubama Khan of Peretonu, Bayelsa State, wants human rights organisations, public spirited individuals and the world to come to our aid over the unlawful detention of Mrs. Khan.”
Johnbull alleged that over a week after her invitation, Khan had been held in the DSS cell.
He said: “It is alleged that she is being forced to make an undertaking to upturn the results of the Rivers State general elections in favour of the All Progressives Congress, APC, by the ruling party at the national level.
“As a woman diagnosed with hypertension and diabetics, she has been denied of her medication, and the development has affected her health. It is a well known fact that, all matters or issues concerning the last general elections across the country are at present being handled by various election tribunals.
“As we wonder why the REC, Mrs. Khan was singled out for victimisation and intimidated by DSS, as all issues concerning the past general elections are before competent electoral tribunals set up by laws of the country.
“Therefore, we are using this medium to appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari who is the apostle of change to quickly intervene and call the Director-General of DSS to order that due process and the rule of law prevail on this matter.
“We are equally asking the Rivers State Election Tribunal chairman and other members to be aware of the unholy victimisation and unlawful interference by the former governor and the DSS to allow the tribunal perform its duties without fear or favour.
“We also call on the Rivers State APC to stop the maligning and desperate mudslinging of our daughter before, during and after the general elections,” he said.

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