Most of the violence and kidnapping currently being experienced in Rivers State are being perpetrated by loyalists of the state Governor, Nyesom Wike, the Rivers Progressives Front (RPF), has alleged.
The RPF further alleged that the perpetrators were members of the gangs unleashed on the state by Mr. Wike to help him win the last governorship election in the state, which it described as a “sham”.
The last general elections in Rivers State were marred by widespread irregularities, maiming, intimidation and killings. These acts accounted largely for the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal’s decision to order a re-run in the state.
Gov. Wike has already appealed the tribunal’s ruling.
In a statement by its spokesman, Elder Tamuno Iyalla on Sunday, the RPF said it “is terribly concerned about this trend of things that has almost totally disorganised and dislocated social and economic life in our dear state”.
More worrisome, the statement noted, is the emerging pieces of evidence that points to supporters of Gov. Wike as being masterminds of the heightened state of violence and insecurity in Rivers State.
“On Thursday, some people were arrested by the police at Ada-George Road with three AK-47 rifles and 300 ammunition given to them. Based on their confession, they were given the arms by an official of Emohua Local Government. As we make this gruesome development public in this press release, Gov. Nyesom Wike is putting pressure on the police to release the suspects”, the group claimed.
The RPF, however, enjoined the Commissioner of Police in the state, Musa Kimo, to ensure that his men resist pressure from Wike and thoroughly investigate the matter and prosecute the suspects according to law.
“We remind the commissioner of police to realise that his reputation and office are being endangered by the activities of criminals who enjoy the support of Wike’s government officials. This is the time for the commissioner to bring to the knowledge of all Rivers people and Nigerians that the intractable violence and insecurity in Rivers State are all induced and sustained by the present Rivers State government officials, directly and indirectly”, the group said.