Electoral Violence: Court Backs Wike, Declares Police Panel Illegal

Wike Alleges INEC Plans To Rig 2019 ElectionJustice Gabriel Kolawole of the Federal High Court Abuja has declared as illegal the 15-man probe panel constituted by the Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Idris, to investigate the violence that took place during and after the December 10, 2016, National and State Assembly rerun election in Rivers State.

Delivering judgement in the suit filed on January 11, 2017, by the Rivers State Government and Governor Nyesom Wike, Justice Kolawole said “the police panel was unknown to law” because it lacked constitutional backing.

Consequently, the court held that the report of the panel was not valid and from a doubtful source.

The trial judge also held that it was wrong for the IGP to constitute a police panel that had the Department of State Security as a member.

Justice Kolawole noted that even though Section 4 and 11 of Police Act, allows the police to investigate allegations of crime, the law stipulates that the police will require presidential assent in order to delegate power to another prosecutorial agency.

Justice Kolawole also said that had the report of the panel been placed before the court, it would have been quashed

In view of this, Justice Kolawole said it remained to be seen whether the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, would prosecute those indicted by the police probe panel based on an illegal report.

Appeal Court Okays Probe Of Amaechi

Nyesom Wike, Chibuike Amaechi, Rives RerunA Court of Appeal sitting in Port Harcourt has dismissed the appeal filed by former Governor Rotimi Amaechi against the Government of Rivers State, the chairman and members of the Panel of inquiry, and others to the effect that the panel did not give him fair hearing.

In a unanimous judgement, the three justices held that former Governor denied himself fair hearing by refusing to appear before the panel.

The court also held that former Governor Amaechi and minister of Transportation did not show concrete evidence that the panel was biased and set up to find him guilty.

Former Governor Rotimi Amaechi had approached the Appeal court to challenge the decision of the high court in the State that declared that the Panel of Inquiry set up by the Rivers State Government in 2015 to investigate the sale of state assets was properly constituted and its findings in line with the law.

 

Federal Judiciary Infrastructure Project Is To Ensure Access To Justice—Wike

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has explained that his administration is investing in Federal Judiciary infrastructure because the Federal Government has turned a blind eye to her responsibilities to the Rivers people.

Speaking during a courtesy visit by the National Association of Rivers State Students from the Nigerian Law School at the Government House, Port Harcourt on Thursday, Governor Wike said that his administration was compelled to make necessary investments in courts under the Federal Government because they were left to rot.

“After Lagos State, the next state with the highest number of litigation is Rivers State. Yet the Federal High Court in Port Harcourt was dilapidated, the National Industrial Court was nonexistent and the Court of Appeal has been in a sorry state.

“To ensure that our people have access to justice, we resolved to construct a new Federal High Court complex with six modern courtrooms and state of the art facilities . That complex will be commissioned in May.

“We have proposed the demolition of the existing old Federal High Court, so that we can build a new complex with more courtrooms “.

The governor added that his administration is constructing the National Industrial Court complex in Port Harcourt, as part of measures to ensure that litigants no longer travel to Yenagoa for their cases.

According to him, the Court of Appeal building in Port Harcourt is undergoing total rehabilitation to ensure that it accommodates more litigants.

He assured that his administration will continue to deliver on quality projects, good governance and enhance the standard of living of the people.

Governor Wike noted that his administration will also promote the welfare of students in the state.

Earlier, the Publicity Secretary of the National Association of Rivers State Students from the Nigerian Law School, Miss Akubueze Okocha lauded Governor Wike for his outstanding achievements in the development of infrastructure in the law sector.

She urged the governor to maintain the tempo of projects delivery across the state.

Governor Wike later took the students on a tour of projects within the Government House Port Harcourt, where he explained the status of the projects.

Wike Inspects Projects Scheduled For Commissioning

Ahead of the Golden Jubilee and second anniversary of his administration, the Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has inspected projects nearly completed in different parts of the state.

The governor inspected the Federal High Court Complex being funded by the Rivers State Government which houses six courtrooms.

He was accompanied by the Special Adviser on Special Projects, Mr Cyril Wite, who assured him that the furnishing and finishing touches at the Federal High Court Complex were progressing as scheduled.

The governor also inspected the Port Harcourt Pleasure Park alongside the Senator Representing Rivers-East Senatorial District, Senator George Thompson Sekibo and the South-South Julius Berger Project Manager, Peter Refunster.

The State Ecumenical Centre was also inspected by the Rivers State Governor which is almost completed.

The Port Harcourt Pleasure Park will be commissioned on May 26, while the State Ecumenical Centre will be commissioned on May 28, 2017.

Wike Accuses Police IG Of Plot To Kill Him

Wike Assures Investors Of Land And Tax Relief In Rivers StateThe Governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike, has alleged that the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, is after his life.

Wike told journalists in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital, on Saturday that before he travelled to Kaduna on Friday, the IGP directed his crack team to invade his home in Asokoro, Abuja supposedly acting on information from a whistle-blower.

“I want to reiterate, the Inspector-General of Police is after my life,” he said.

He claimed the planned raid was aimed at planting firearms, cash and other incriminating exhibits in his Abuja home, claims the police have denied.

Wike said, “All attempts are being made so that they will go and plant either AK-47 or $1m in the governor’s house. They can even plant costly wristwatches as a propaganda tool.

“I said I have to let Nigerians know that this is not the way to go about in democracy. Rather, this is an attempt to truncate democracy. That someone differs on issues does not mean you have to go after the person’s life.”

According to the governor, the police also planned to obtain a search warrant from the court on Tuesday, as Monday is a public holiday, under the guise that they unaware that the house in question belonged to a sitting governor.

He called on the police to come to his home in rivers to conduct their search, instead of his Abuja residence, which he hardly visits.

“Nigerians should be aware that should they raid my house in Abuja and claim they found anything, it is incorrect. I have not been going to Abuja, but I will be in Abuja to wait for them to see how they plan to plant guns in my house,” Wike said.

The Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, however, denied the governor’s allegation.

In a telephone interview with our correspondent in Abuja, Moshood said the police never plants incriminating materials in the house of anybody.

The Force PRO also said he was not aware of any plan by the police to raid the Abuja home of Governor Wike.

He added that the Police would always act within ‎its constitutional mandate of protecting lives and properties including the prevention of crime.

No Plan To Plant Incriminating Evidence Against Wike – Police

Force PRO, Jimoh Moshood

 The Nigerian Police Force has denied claims by Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, that it plans to plant incriminating evidence against the governor.

Wike had on Saturday accused the Inspector-General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, of being after his life and directing police personnel to plant firearms, cash and other incriminating exhibits in his Abuja home.

The Force Public Relations Officer, Jimoh Moshood, however, denied the governor’s allegation.

In a telephone interview with our correspondent in Abuja, Moshood said the police never plants incriminating materials in the house of people.

The Force PRO also said he was not aware of any plan by the police to raid the Abuja home of Governor Wike.

He added that the Police would always act within ‎its constitutional mandate of protecting lives and properties including the prevention of crime.

READ ALSO: Wike Accuses IGP of Plot To Kill Him

Governor Wike Felicitates With Mothers On Special Day

wikeThe Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has expressed satisfaction with the contributions of mothers to the development of the state.

In a message to mark the 2017 Mother’s Day, the governor noted that mothers in the state have always lived up to their responsibilities.

This was made known in a statement signed by the Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor on Electronic Media, Simeon Nwakaudu.

The governor said mothers occupy a special place in the state, as they are major stakeholders in the Rivers project.

He also felicitated with mothers across the world, describing them as priceless.

While praying God to bless mothers and grant them good health to continue with their service to humanity, Wike assured them of his love and respect at all times.

He further assured them that his administration would continue to implement capacity building programmes for women so as to help them contribute their quota to the development of the state.

Wike Vows To Support Six Dismissed Officers

Nyesom Wike, Rivers State, Justices Of The PeaceThe Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has vowed to stand by the six dismissed policemen attached to him during the December 10 rerun elections.

The Governor who believes that “sometimes success comes in the form of a bad experience”, also said that any attempt to intimidate him would fail.

He made the comments at a defection ceremony of a former Chairman of Ahoada East Local Government Area and a former Chieftain of the APC to the PDP, Cassidy Ikegbidi, in Ahoada East Local Government Area in the state.

According to him, the dismissal of the men is a blessing in disguise.

The government had earlier described the situation as a “sad development for professionalism in the Nigerian Police force”.

Spokesman of the Nigeria Police high command, Mr Don Awunah, announced the dismissal of the six officers who accompanied Wike in the wake of the drama at Rivers East collation centre in the Port Harcourt city council.

Awunah told journalists at a news conference in Abuja, that the officers acted contrary to the laws that ought to have guided their conduct during the exercise.

APC Demands Immediate Removal Of Resident Electoral Commissioner

APC Protests Results In Rivers East Senatorial District, OthersThe All Progressives Congress (APC), has demanded the immediate redeployment of Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Mr Aniedi Ikoiwak, for colluding with Governor Nyesom Wike and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to rig the December 10 rerun legislative elections in Rivers state in favour of PDP.

The demand was contained in a statement issued on Monday in Port Harcourt and signed by Rivers APC Chairman, Dr. Davies Ibiamu Ikanya.

The statement reads: “With the revelation of the unholy partnership between Wike and Mr Aniedi Ikoiwak, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) to deny a large chunk of the Rivers State electorate a voice during the rerun election, we hereby demand for the immediate redeployment of this enemy of democracy.

“Mr Ikoiwak had the audacity to announce PDP’s George Sekibo as a Senator without adding votes from three LGAs of Etche, Emohua and Ikwerre LGAs which would have made APC’s Andrew Uchendu the winner.”

Based on this, the APC, Rivers State Chapter, “wish to ask Sekibo, Osinakachukwu Ideozu and their likes in PDP not to celebrate their fake victories as we will not allow killers of our people to lead us but will use every constitutional means at our disposal to retrieve the mandate given to our candidates by the voters”.

Rivers APC berated Wike who, according to the party, was caught on audio tape shouting: “Tell the Electoral Officers in Etche and Khana to return my money or I’ll kill them – I’ll make sure that they will not leave Rivers State. I understand that both of them are from Plateau State… I’ll kill them if they don’t return my money.

“With this latest revelation we have been vindicated that Wike is the most bloodthirsty Governor in Nigeria who if not checked, will surely derail our democracy. Who knows how many Rivers State people that Wike and his PDP hoodlums would have killed for the sake of electoral victory if not for the Police and other security agencies?

“Having watched the outbursts of Chief Wike before, during and after the December 10 rerun election, we have come to the conclusion that Wike is nothing but a comical tyrant and blackmailer who needs to be restrained before he derails our hard-won emerging democracy.

“Governor Wike has not ceased to accuse the Army, DSS, Police, INEC and APC leadership of collaborating to cause havoc during the rerun election while in actual fact, he is the brain perpetuating all the killings, ballot snatching of INEC sensitive materials and fake announcements of induced INEC results, the party stated.

Police Probe Panel

Furthermore, the party questioned that: “How come a police officer, DSP Mohammed Alkali was brutally beheaded with his aide, at the usual spot where PDP hoodlums kill other security agents at Omoku? How come PDP candidates are declared as winners in most of the results so far declared by INEC?

It added that: “Under the watch of Wike, Rivers State has degenerated into a miasma, where lives have become solitary, nasty, brutish, short and the sanctity of the human lives is not paid the attention it ought to get under the purposeless PDP-led government.

“Not minding the tyranny of Wike, the Ogonis have proved that they are truly soldiers of democracy by ensuring that their son Magnus Abe was duly elected Senator, thereby shaming Wike and his army of undemocratic elements and appreciating the Ogoni clean-up initiative of President Muhammdu Buhari,” the statement said.

Concerning the 70 incidents reported, the party then insisted that Wike must submit himself to the Police Probe Panel to join the police in bringing an end to the killings in Rivers State since he assumed office.

Wike on the other hand, says the government and people of the state would not be party to the police ‘phoney’ probe panel.

Police Gave Security Details To APC To Intimidate Voters -Wike

Police Gave Security Details To APC To Intimidate Voters -WikeRivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has again taken a swipe at the rivers state police command for giving security details to the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC), ahead of the rerun elections.

Governor Wike told his supporters that the Police has by this action declared that the command is not ready for a free and fair election to be conducted.

“I am telling the whole world to know that there are persons who are bent on making sure that we don’t conduct free and fair election.

“The president has said INEC should conduct free and fair election, and I am ready to support that – that is my duty as a governor, but INEC and some people are not ready to do the right thing and when I tell the world what they are doing they will say I want to cause trouble.

“Okay see police that is supposed to ensure free and fair election, they have given security to the APC politicians who are running for the same election.

“See what police has done, Ojukaiye Flag-Amachree, that is standing trial for murder who has been granted bail, SARS has given him ten men to guard him, to be led by inspector Leman.

“Mureen Tamuno, they gave her ten men to be led by inspector David, what is she going to do with ten men? Is it not to use them to intimidate our supporters at the various units and snatch ballot box? – Are they not the ones causing trouble? Wike questioned.

The Governor was speaking to the people of Ogba /Egbema / Ndoni (ONELGA), where he assured them that his administration would execute critical projects in the area to improve the standard of living of the people.

He said: “God’s time has come for the development of ONELGA, for all your efforts, I will pay you back with more development projects”.

He stated that the Omoku to Egbema road would be dualized by the Rivers State Government, while the reconstruction of the Omoku to Ahoada road had already been awarded.

According to him, the reconstruction of the Omoku internal roads is progressing steadily as scheduled, and in line with approved specifications.

He noted that the General Hospital in Omoku would be rebuilt, pointing out that the level of decay had gone beyond rehabilitation.

In his remarks , Rivers State Commissioner for Health, Dr Theophilus Odagme, affirmed that the construction of the General Hospital, Omoku would improve the health indices of the area.

The governor also announced the comprehensive rehabilitation of the General Hospital in Egbema town of ONELGA.

He then expressed happiness that the state amnesty programme was embraced by majority of cultists and militants from ONELGA, while also adding that the community had been experiencing relative peace with the success of the programme.

He however stated that those who refused to embrace the amnesty programme in the area would face the full weight of the law.

Rivers Rerun: INEC Replies Wike, Says Adhoc Staff Are Non-Partisan

Rivers Rerun: INEC Replies Wike, Says Adhoc Staff Are Non-PartisanThe Resident Electoral Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Rivers State, Aniedi Ikoiwak, has reacted to the allegations of the Rivers State Governor that the electoral body has fraudulently recruited adhoc staff for the rerun elections in the state.

The Resident Electoral Commissioner told journalists in Port Harcourt, the Rivers state capital that the commission is non-partisan in the recruitment of adhoc staff for any election.

He maintained that the claims by Governor Wike were not true.

He promised that the commission would continue to ensure that persons recruited are trained as well as maintain political neutrality in its approach in the conduct of the polls.

Aniedi ikoiwak reaffirmed INEC’s commitment to a free and credible polls during the Rivers rerun.

Governor Nyesom Wike had accused INEC of releasing an APC-dominated list of ad-hoc staff for the December 10 rerun elections.

According to him, INEC included APC Ward Chairmen and Ward Secretaries as Assistant Presiding Officers (APO’s).

He made the declaration while flagging off the rehabilitation of the General Hospital, Terabor and General Hospital, Bodo in Gokana Local Government Area on Thursday.

Wike expressed shock that the electoral umpire could publish a list of ad-hoc staff, describing it as fraught with such level of fraud.

He presented the alleged fake INEC ad-hoc list to thousands of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) supporters in Gokana, noting that the members of the opposition party have been duly identified.

According to him, “INEC and her sponsors will be resisted”.

Wike Claims INEC Adhoc Staff List Dominated By APC

Wike Claims INEC Adhoc Staff List Dominated By APCRivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has berated the leadership of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC ), for allegedly releasing an All Progressives Congress (APC) dominated list of ad-hoc staff, for the December 10 rerun elections.

According to him, INEC had included APC Ward Chairmen and Ward Secretaries as Assistant Presiding Officers (APO’s).

He made the declaration while Flagging off the rehabilitation of the General Hospital, Terabor and General Hospital, Bodo in Gokana Local Government Area on Thursday.

Wike expressed shock that the electoral umpire could publish a list of ad-hoc staff, describing it as fraught with such level of fraud.

He presented the alleged fake INEC ad-hoc list to thousands of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) supporters in Gokana, noting that the members of the opposition party have been duly identified.

According to him, “INEC and her sponsors will be resisted”.

Furthermore, he said “it is unfortunate that INEC and security agencies are disregarding the directive of President Muhammadu Buhari that they should be impartial and deliver free and fair elections.

“INEC has released a fake list of ad-hoc staff for the rerun elections before the conclusion of their mandatory training.

Wike also noted that “majority of those on the list are known APC Ward Chairmen and ward Secretaries who were mainly unemployed illitrates, but listed by INEC as staff of the University of Port Harcourt.

“They think that my love for peace is a sign of weakness, but I want to declare that enough is enough – We are supposed to be under an era of change, but the love for fraud by INEC and Police is unprecedented “, the governor said.

He added that “anyone whose son or daughter is on that fraudulent INEC list should tell him/her to stay away on election Day.

“All these desperate actions are geared towards the plot to rig in favor of a particular candidate, but that candidate will not win,” he said.

“The people of Rivers South-East Senatorial District must be allowed to vote persons of their choice”.

The governor also alleged that the security agencies are working with APC leaders to release fake police and army uniforms to police thugs for electoral fraud.

“Nobody should intimidate you with security agents. Beginning today, resist any arrest. You must move around in groups to promote resistance of the robbers of mandate.

“For me, they are threatening that I will be the first governor they will assassinate.

“They are threatening that they will show me that they are security agencies. But, I will always protect the interest of Rivers State, no matter the threat”, Wike stressed.

Switching to a lighter matter, he however said that the ongoing rehabilitation of the General Hospital Hospital, Terabor and Bodo, would be equipped and completed in record time.

He also gave an assurance that the Kpopie-Bodo road, which had been abandoned was nearing completion, while the dualization of Sakpenwa-Bori road was progressing according to schedule .

He then called on the Ogoni people to remain supportive of the PDP, by voting massively for the party, while pointing out that for eight years, APC failed to execute well-meaning projects in Ogoni land.