State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo
Wike, has declared that the forthcoming
legislative rerun elections in the state
would be tests of the preparedness of the
current Federal Government to allow for
deepening of democracy.
Governor Wike reiterated that the
Supreme Court upheld his election on
the premise of laid down legal principles,
applied in all the other governorship
appeals, saying that no action was taken
to influence the judgment as alleged
by the Rivers All Progressives Congress,
The governor, who appeared on
a radio phone-in programme in Port
Harcourt on Saturday, said that the
people of Rivers State would not allow
the planned use of security agencies to
rig the elections to work.
According to him, the desperation to
rig the rerun elections, is part of a plot
by the APC to capture the state through
fraudulent means as they had arranged
to write results and go ahead with an
impeachment plan.
He said: “They are so desperate to rig
the elections. These elections will be a test
for democracy in Nigeria.”
Governor Wike said, contrary to
claims by the APC, he is not involved
in inciting violence as the warning he
gave that those who planned to rig
the rerun elections will be treated as
political armed robbers was in line with
similar warnings given by President
Muhammadu Buhari before the last
general elections.
“If they are coming to do proper
elections, to let the will of the people to
prevail, we will support them. Why
are they worried because we are fighting
political armed robbers?” he said.
On the issue of the Supreme Court
judgment which validated his election,
Governor Wike said, just like in other
governorship elections, the court held
that the Card Reader was not superior
to the voter register in the accreditation
He added that the Supreme Court also
held that he was not given fair hearing
because the second chairman of the
Rivers State Governorship Tribunal
passed a judgment in a motion that he
did not hear.
The state chief executive stated that it
was unfortunate that the Rivers State
APC would misinterpret his vote of
thanks and single out Dr Peter Odili
for attacks when he listed several PDP
leaders who supported him as party
Governor Wike said that, in the
earlier appeal he filed on the issue
of territorial jurisdiction with Justice
Mary Odili on the panel, the Supreme
Court dismissed his appeal with the
APC celebrating, pointing out that on
the panel without Just Mary Odili, his
appeal was upheld.
He wondered why the Rivers APC
wanted the world to believe their
falsehood that Justice Mary Odili
influenced a panel in which she was
not a member, but could not influence
the one she sat on.
Commenting on the military
invasion of Ogoni communities,
which led to the loss of innocent lives,
Governor Wike said that he supported
the fight against criminality but would
never support the unjustified killing
of innocent people.
He said he visited Yeghe and Bori
as governor, to ascertain the level of
damage and loss of lives and wondered
why in the so-called search for one
Solomon Ndigbara, the military
would massively deploy to Ogoni land
to disrupt very peaceful communities.
While blaming Senator Magnus
Abe for going about with soldiers to
intimidate his constituents, Governor
Wike said that it was unfortunate that
some politicians invite soldiers to rout
their peaceful communities.
He said that the Solomon Ndigbara
that Magnus Abe is hunting for was
Senator Abe’s associate before they fell
out politically.
“Senator Magnus Abe should
apologize to the Ogoni people. I am an
Ikwerre man. Have you ever seen me
invite the military to our land?” he said.
He denied making any inciting
statement when he attended the
birthday of Senator Lee Maeba, saying
that all he did was to campaign for the
PDP candidate, Senator Olaka Nwogu.
The governor added that he
intercepted a communication wherein
Senator Abe stated that he could only
emerge victorious through the help of
soldiers during the rerun elections.
Governor Wike emphasised his
declaration that top government
functionaries, PDP candidates in the
forthcoming rerun elections and PDP
leaders should resist arrest from
security agents detailed to destabilise
the PDP ahead of the rerun elections.
He said he believes in the rule of
law hence he will not allow anyone
to use illegal means to manipulate the
election process in the state