Edo polls: Police lay siege to Wike’s hotel in Benin City

   …I won’t obey IGP order to leave Edo, says Rivers governor

The Rivers State Government has alleged that the life of Governor Nyesom Wike is in danger in Edo State as over 300 policemen lay siege to his hotel.

A statement issued by Paulinus Nsirim, Commissioner for Information and Communications, said the attention of the Rivers State Government had been drawn to a worrisome report that the Hotel Wike is staying in Benin City was presently under siege by over 300 policemen.

“What is more disturbing is that the policemen led by DIG Leye Oyebanji have also been very audible with threats that he should leave Edo State.

“We want to place on record that the Rivers State Governor was appointed the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP National Campaign Council Chairman for the September 19th 2020 Edo State Governorship election.

“This is a legitimate, constitutionally recognized appointment in the electoral rules, guidelines and processes of our country.

“It confers on him, the democratic authority to be in Edo State to spearhead the campaign and lend support to the Governorship candidate of his political party,” the statement said.

The government said Wike had not committed any crime to warrant this intimidation and stated categorically that the siege on his hotel was totally unlawful, illegitimate and provocative.

“This is even more so when placed against the backdrop of the fact that Governor Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State, who equally occupies this same position in the All Progressives Congress, APC and indeed his counterpart, Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State, are all in Benin, Edo State, carrying out the same assignment for the APC.

“They are moving about freely, without any siege on their locations or molestation, threats, harassments and intimidation.

“We hereby put the Nigerian Government and International Community on notice that the life of Governor Wike is in danger and under serious threat.

“Rivers People will hold the Inspector General of Police, IGP Mohammed Adamu, personally responsible if anything happens to the life of our Governor.

“We also appeal to President Muhammadu Buhari, to uphold the tenets of democracy by making good his pledge of ensuring a free, fair, credible and transparent election, devoid of intimidation in Edo State,” the statement said.

In a further twist, Gov. Wike on Friday said that the Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mohammed Adamu, had called him to leave Edo ahead of the State’s governorship election today.

Wike, who is the Chairman of the PDP National Campaign Council for Edo Governorship Election said the IGP said he should leave Benin because his presence may result in crisis ahead of the gubernatorial poll because of his utterances.

Wike, however, said he told the IGP that he would not leave Edo because some governors of APC and other chieftains of the party are also in the city.

He said, “I am not the only Governor here, the Governor of Imo State is here, Ganduje is here, the deputy Senate President is here. So, why should you tell me to leave? I said I will not leave.

“As the chairman of Campaign Council, we have to monitor what is going on and tomorrow, we go out and monitor what is going on. He cannot tell me that I must leave Edo State. It has not happened in this country. I don’t know where we are heading to. For IG to call a governor, to tell a Governor you must leave Edo State. It is the highest level of impunity.

“I am not going to vote, but we hold it as a duty as a party tell us monitor what is going on. I am here to do my assignment, I’m not here on campaign, the people must have made their minds on who they are going to vote for and who they will not vote for.

“But at the end of the day as the chairman of the Campaign Council, I should be able to write a report, say what I witnessed, and say what happened. Not for the IG to call me, a governor, that you must leave the state. I have not seen that kind of thing in my life.”


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