There’s no end in sight to the crisis rocking the Rivers State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as the Minister of State for Education, Nyesom Wike warned thursday that he would open up if those threatening to expose him dare talk.
Wike’s threat came as the police in the state thursday withdrew all security personnel attached to the Chairman of Okirika Local Government Council in what was perceived to be a clampdown on supporters of the state governor, ChibuikeAmaechi. He was reacting to reports quoting Amaechi as stating that he would soon expose those fighting him.
Addressing PDP stalwarts during the inauguration of committees at the party secretariat in Port Harcourt, Wike said those threatening to expose him were embarking on a fruitless journey as it was too late to do that.
He said: “I heard some people are saying that they will talk and expose people fighting them; it is too late to expose people fighting them now. It is meaningless now.
“I worked as Chief of Staff at the Government House and the documents are there for all to see. Let them carry the documents and go through them and do what they like with them.
“The day they speak, I will speak too. It is not only one man that can speak. When you speak, others will also speak.”
Wike, who was chief of staff to Amaechi in his first tenure, said politicians should not play politics of bitterness, adding that while the governor had received commendations for some achievements, such successes could not have come without the help and support of the people.
He warned the executive of the party not to disrespect Amaechi as he remained the governor and leader of the party in the state.
“By the constitution of the party, the state governor is the leader of the party in the state, so you must respect the governor and carry him along in everything you do. If not, you are not being fair,” Wike said.
He spoke of the need to bring back all aggrieved members of the party who have abandoned the party, saying the more they are in the party, the merrier.
“You cannot eat alone. When you eat alone, it is not always satisfying. The PDP is a big umbrella that can accommodate everybody. Everybody should be carried along,” he said.
Earlier, the state chairman of the party, Felix Obuah, had inaugurated members of committees on discipline and investigations, reconciliation, thanksgiving and dedication, as well as performance and evaluation.
Obuah said his executive was determined to rebuild the party and bring back all aggrieved members who had left the party’s fold from1999 to date.
Meanwhile, the police have ordered the withdrawal of mobile policemen attached to the chairman of Okirika Local Government Council, Tamuno William, and those posted to the council secretariat. The incident followed an interview on Channels Television, in which the chairman, a supporter of Amaechi, spoke on the developments in the state.
William said all the mobile policemen who had until yesterday morning provided security for the council and to him had been withdrawn without notice.
He said he tried to find out who was behind their withdrawal but those he spoke to in the police hierarchy just told him “it was an order from above”.
Efforts to get a response from the police on the development were unsuccessful.
The new Police Public Relations Officer in the state, Angela Agabe (DSP), who resumed duty yesterday, said she was expecting details of what happened from the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) in Okrika.
But the state’s Commissioner for Information and Communications, Mrs. IbimSemenitari, expressed surprise at the development.
She said the incident created the impression that the police in the state might have been compromised.
Also yesterday, the Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt adjourned hearing in the suit brought against Inspector General of Police (IG) Mohammed Abubakar and Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice Mohammed Adoke by the Chairman of the Caretaker Committee of Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state, Mr. Chikaodi Dike.
The Assistant Inspector-General of Police (AIG) in-charge of Zone 6, Calabar, Rivers State Commissioner of Police, and Divisional Police Officer in-charge of Rumuodomaya Police Division were also joined in the suit.
The court in its last sitting had summoned Adoke and Abubakar to appear before it to show cause why it should not grant an injunction restraining them from the continued closure of the council secretariat by policemen.
But in an effort to resolve the political crisis in Rivers State, the House of Representatives mandated its Committees on Police Affairs, Justice and Human Rights to conduct an investigation into the remote and immediate causes of the siege on the Rivers State House of Assembly.
It also urged the IG to ask his men and officers to withdraw from the premises of the state parliament and other places so occupied to ensure unhindered access for those whose responsibility it is to use those facilities.
These decisions came same day the lawmakers condemned the clash between the police and members of the Ombatse group in Nasarawa, which resulted in the death of about 30 policemen.
The House therefore resolved to send a delegation to Nasarawa State to condole the government and people of the state over the recent bloody clash.
The lawmakers urged the federal and Nasarawa State governments to engage the different community groups in dialogue to ensure that peace was restored to the area.
The resolution followed a motion of urgent public importance sponsored by Hon. Sokonte Davis (PDP/Rivers) on the alleged threat to democratic institutions in the state.
Davis alleged that the Rivers State Police Command had resorted to subterfuge and intimidation of the state’s House of Assembly by occupying the complex, causing the legislators to adjourn indefinitely.
He said there were reports that anarchy was looming at the state parliament and that the police were positioned to cash in on the crisis to cause mayhem and force a state of emergency on the state.
According to Davis, the police took over the complex even when Amaechi did not request for their intervention.