Police reads Riot Act to Rivers APC, Wike’s boys, warns against planned public protests

Posted by News Express | 13 July 2015 | 3,364 times

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The Rivers State Command yesterday read the Riot Act to the state chapter of ​All Progressives Congress (APC) and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) government under the watch of Chief Nyesom Wike, warning against protests reportedly panned to hold in the state today.

A statement signed by DCP. Austin I. Agbonlahor, Deputy Commissioner of Police, for the State Commissioner of Police alerted on plans by unidentified individuals to hold a protest march in the capital city of Port Harcourt “and other locations in the state against the recent Federal High Court Judgment nullifying the election of the Chairmen of 22 LGAs and the swearing-in of Care-Taker Committees in their stead.”

“​Similarly, the Command has credible intelligence that the protesters will be countered by another group. This could lead to confrontation with unpleasant consequences,” Agbonlahor said.

According to him, “The protest marches are meant to register perceived grievances over the court’s pronouncement and subsequent action of the State Government.”

Calling those behind the planned protests to order, Agbonlahor said: ​“We are in a democracy, where the Rule of Law and the Right to protest are legitimate rights and aspirations. However, these rights stop where those of the other person begins.

​“We acknowledge that anyone can hold a legitimate and peaceful protest, it is also fair to admit that the protest planners would not be able to control the process as pro and anti forces, including hoodlums could hijack it and turn the State into a theatre of violence.

​“On that basis, we are advising that all aggrieved persons should sheathe their swords and toe the path of honour by resorting to legal means to seek redress and justice.

​“Rivers State has experienced violence and disruptions to socio-economic life caused apparently by differences in political views. These have created tension and palpable fear in the minds of the people.

​“Monday is the beginning of a new working week, every person should be more concerned about working on productive plans that would advance the society and not embark on acts capable of taking the state backwards.

​“By this, the Police Command wishes to reiterate its earlier stance that parents should warn their children and wards to avoid being used to foment trouble or engage in acts capable of disrupting public peace. Elders, Community leaders, Chieftains of political parties and indeed all stakeholders should be wary of instigating, supporting or financing violent acts in society, but should work harmoniously and tread the path of peace.

​“The Police Command is very mindful of its constitutional duty of law enforcement and protection of lives and property. These responsibilities will be fully exercised within the confines of the law.

​“The Command is therefore ready to deal decisively with anyone or group that decides to cause any uprising, violent protests, or undertake acts capable of violating or disrupting public peace. At the same time, we wish to assure the general public that they should go about their lawful businesses without fear and should report anything seen or heard that could breach public peace and orderliness.

​“All should be guided accordingly as we all work to make Rivers State better, peaceful and prosperous.”

•Photo shows batle-ready policemen.


Source: News Express

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