Posted by News Express | 22 March 2019 | 636 times
The Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the violence, mayhem and breach of peace before, during and after the General Elections sitting in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, has invited former Governor, Chief Timipre Sylva, and some other chieftains of the All Progressive Congress (APC).
The Commission sitting under the chairmanship of Justice Inikade Eradiri on Friday invited the APC chieftains whose names have come up prominently in the sittings to appear before it to clear their names of sundry allegations.
Apart from Ex-Governor Sylva, those invited include a member of Bayelsa State House of Assembly, Hon. Israel Sunny-Goli; Acting Managing Director of the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC), Prof. Nelson Brambaifa; Minister of State for Agriculture, Sen. Heineken Lokpobiri; and Mr. Famous Danumiegha, the candidate of APC for the Sagbama/Ekeremor Federal Constituency in the February 23, 2019 election.
Their invitation follows an order granted the Nigeria Police Force by Justice Okon Abang of Federal High Court Abuja to arrest the lawmaker representing Brass 1 Constituency in the House of Assembly, Hon. Israel Sunny-Goli, an Oil Surveillance Contractor, Sam Kodjo, and others over alleged complicity in the February 23, 2019 attack and abduction of Deputy Commissioner of Police, Mr. Kola Okunlola, in Brass.
The commission of inquiry, which has received written and oral testimonies on the role played by politicians since it commenced sitting, heard the testimonies of eight fresh witnesses during its sitting on Thursday.
Led in evidence by the commission’s counsel, Professor Festus Emiri, the State Commissioner for Transport, Mr. Daupirimo Ikuromo, said despite the peace accord signed, thugs allegedly loyal to Sylva forced the leadership of Okpoama and Ewoama communities to compel their people to vote only in favour of APC.
Mr. Ikuromo stated that he and other PDP stalwarts were not opportune to exercise their franchise as they were chased out of the community.
He said those who came out to vote were beaten up and forced back into their houses, insisting that the Army and other security agencies were under the control of the APC during the period.
Another testifier, Chief Ebitimi Ayah, the Regent of Ewoama community, said he was compelled to authourise a proclamation ordering his subjects to vote only APC or risk losing their lives.
The traditional ruler disclosed that the community “was thrown into fear by the heavy presence of APC thugs and threats to monitor and deal with whoever voted the PDP and its candidates.”
Also, the Auditor of Nembe Cheifs Council，Chief Kio Eldred-Siari, indicted officials of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) who, according to him, prevented him and other Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) supporters from voting on the day of the election.
Another witness, Chief Nathan Egba-Ologo, Director Strategic Communication, Governor’s Office, said that an existing peace accord was violated by the APC leaders and thugs.
He said that the thugs of APC who laid siege on Okpoama community rough-handled the 84-year-old Chairman of the Council of Chiefs, Chief Allen Orukari, and compelled him to approve an announcement forcing his subjects to vote only for APC or leave the community.
Others who testified before the commission are Mr Austin Adigio, the Special Adviser to Governor Dickson on Student Affairs, and Chief Febor Kuroekigh the Public Relations Officer, Iwoama Chiefs Council.
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