The battle for supremacy between the two factions of the Rivers State Chapter of the All Progressive Congress, APC, took a different direction on Saturday, the 11th of August as thugs said to be loyal to one faction, laid siege on the factional secretariat of the party at the waterline axis of Aba road and vandalized the building.
While the ugly incident lasted, there was no response whatsoever from the security agencies in the state capital considering the fact that the Olu Obasanjo Police Station is just a few blocks away.
While the siege lasted, residents in the state observed with dismay, the brazenness exhibited by the perpetrators of such illegalities and the confidence of their sponsors.
This has in no small measures given residents the impression that more is in the offing as election campaigns approach.
This also brings to question the possibilities of a safe electioneering process in Rivers State given the perchance for political parties to unleashed mayhem in the state, as not just the APC is culpable in such measure of violence but also the Peoples Democratic Party which was evident during the run-up to the local government elections.
While disagreements between political parties are a normal occurrence all over the world, the unleashing of wide-scale violence which was before now, seen as a thing of the past does not put the state on the part to progress but in retrogression.
We are resurrecting a monster that will swallow us all.
These politics of anything go will not only spell doom for the state as the nation moves closer to the 2019 general elections but might become the yardstick for the future. Therefore, it is in the best interest of the parties involved to settle their differences once and for all without resorting to such bare-faced violent approach to issues.
Theportcitynews has observed with shock as the APC in Rivers state continues to spice up their disagreement with deadly violence. More shocking is the silence or the defence of such by their leaders.
While the state is reeling from major security challenges, especially the incessant kidnapping of travellers along the Omerelu-Owerri road in Ikwerre Local Government, it will be unfair for politicians to continue to add fuel to an already burning flame.
The national leadership of the party should weigh in on the matter as it seems the dramatis personae involved are stone-cold hearted to reason.
Recall that such measure of violence equally played out on the 5th of May at the APC secretariat at forces avenue and on the 11th of May at the premises of the High Court where the court building was vandalized with several persons reported injured.
The Rivers State Police command seems to be in connivance with these hoodlums who have chosen to strike fear in the hearts of the masses. While the politics at play is quite understandable, the police as an agency of the government that provides security for the masses should not be seen to be taking sides on the issues of crime.
The Rivers State government has been aloof while these hoodlums operate with reckless abandon. This goes beyond issuing press statements. The governor, as the chief security officer, should invite the parties involved to a roundtable so as to fashion a way out of the incessant destruction of properties. He has a duty of ensuring that the state remains conducive for businesses thrive, restore investors’ confidence and make sure nothing triggers unnecessary fear buttons.
While the gale of denial continues, theportcitynews believes that the state needs peace at this particular time. The youths are also watching while the state is on the verge of being set ablaze due to political wranglings.
The Rivers Elders should also step in to ensure that peace and normalcy return to the Rivers political space.
While it is not the right of any faction of the party to lead violence assaults on the other, theportcitynews believes that the court is the best place to seek redress on the matter.