Grappling With Aftermath Of Council Poll

AMAECHITHE aftermath of the Rivers State Local Government election held in 22 councils of the state, where the All Progressives Congress (APC) was declared winner of all the seats, was quite predictable, as the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has dismissed that the election held.

While the APC is celebrating the ‘overwhelming victory’, which it describes as endorsement of the eight years administration of former Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, the PDP considers claims by APC as a farce, saying the election was fraudulent, illegal and flagrant disobedience of an order by a Federal High that status quo be maintained.

Beyond criticism by the 15 political parties that pulled out from the chairmanship and councillorship elections, some political analysts and residents in the state claimed that the election was maneuvered, while others described it as a welcome development.

Labour Party (LP) Chairman in the state, Prince Favour Reuben, in a communiqué issued at the end of a joint meeting in Port Harcourt, said the poll was an outright deceit and embarrassment. He claimed that the Rivers State Independent Electoral Commission (RSIEC) breached the relevant laws and rules in conducting the election.

On its part, the PDP through its State Chairman, Felix Obuah said, if any local government election was held, what then was used, since the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) did not release voter register for the so-called election.

“Against this background, the PDP declares that the Local Government election purportedly held, is a deliberate contravention of the law, as INEC did not release the duly certified voter register to RSIEC, the body that allegedly conducted the illegal election penultimate Saturday,” Obuah stated.

Obuah reiterated that in the eyes of the law, the PDP and Rivers people, there was no local government election in Rivers State on Saturday, May 23, 2015.

“We therefore, urge members of the PDP, Rivers people and Nigerians at large, to ignore any announcement of results of the purported election and the alleged issuance of Certificates of Return to any person,” the PDP chairman added.

But in a swift reaction, the APC State Chairman, Davies Ikanya urged the people to disregard PDP’s position, saying the election was an example of what polls should be.

He urged the newly elected Council Chairmen to promote security and development of their various areas and implement the party’s manifesto.

Meanwhile, Amaechi during separate swearing-in-ceremonies of the newly elected council chairmen and four new Permanent Secretaries at the Government House, Port Harcourt, said the purported plan by the PDP to dissolve the elected council chairmen would be viewed as an act of impunity against Rivers people.

The new chairmen are: Chimbiko I. Akarolo, Port Harcourt LGA; Augustine Paul Ngo, Abua/Odual LGA; Akpobari Celestine, Khana LGA; Comrade Donatus Badom, Gokana LGA; Samuel Eyiba, Ahoada West LGA; Imie Benson A, Andoni LGA; Fineman Olungwe, Eleme LGA; Abbey Omuso, Bonny LGA; Suleman Atago, Ahaoda East LGA; and Elechi Acho Felix, Oyigbo LGA. Others are, Barr. Reginald Ukwuoma, Etche LGA; Fred-Horsfall, F. V, Asari Toru LGA; Nathaniel Iringeri, Ogu/Bolo LGA; Chidi Olue, Omuma LGA; Benibo Stanley, Akuku Toru LGA; Opi, Nengiaomie Samuel, Okrika LGA; Lucky U. Worluh, Emohua LGA; Felicia N. Barizasi-Tae JP, Tai LGA; Barr. Sogbeye C. Eli, Degema LGA; Loveday M. Jaja, Opobo LGA; Nnanta Gabriel Weh, Obio/Akpor LGA; and Bestman Amadi, Ikwerre LGA.

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