The All Progressives Congress in Rivers State has faulted the allegation by the state Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike, that the Special Anti-Robbery Squad of the Nigeria Police was behind kidnappings and armed robberies in the state.
The state Publicity Secretary of the APC, Mr. Chris Finebone, who spoke with newsmen in Port Harcourt on Thursday, said, “Ordinarily, the APC has no business involving in any matter between the governor and any other entity, but in the instant case and even in previous related cases, the governor has either alluded to or expressly stated that the APC benefited from whatever allegations he raised against the police or particularly the SARS.
“From all indications, the governor’s accusation yesterday (Wednesday) that members of SARS abducted some persons and forced them to withdraw N500, 000 is manifestly cooked up to directly smear members of the SARS and their Commander, Akin Fakorede, who is known to have resisted every advances made by the governor to compromise the officer.
“We recall that Governor Wike has never hidden his disdain for the SARS Commander due to the officer’s principled and professional stance in rejecting the governor’s baits in the past two years. Governor Wike seems to have sworn to have Akin Fakorede compromised or transferred out of Rivers State to pave the way for a replacement that may play ball with him.”
He said the state APC considered Wednesday’s accusation against SARS, as malevolent, mischievous. He alleged that the intention was to mask the next phase of killings by some persons loyal to the governor.
The APC spokesman in the state also decried Wike’s silence on the issue of the Indigenous People of Biafra, adding that while Governor Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State had declared a dusk-to-dawn curfew, Wike had not done anything.
But the state Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Mr Samuel Nwanosike, described the APC’s defence of SARS barely 24 hours after the governor’s declaration as an indication that the APC was sponsoring violent crime in the state through SARS.
Explaining that Wike’s claim that SARS was behind the kidnappings and armed robberies in the state was incontrovertible and with evidence, Nwanosike said it was shocking that while the police had yet to respond to the allegations against them by the governor, the APC decided to come to their defence.
Nwanosike said, “From the position of the APC, the PDP has been vindicated that they (the APC members) are part of the crime. Instead of the SARS Commander (Fakorede) to react to their action that led to the killing of a police inspector, it is the APC that is reacting.
“It shows that Akin Fakorede is being sponsored by the APC in the state. We will not allow this matter to be swept under the carpet the way the issue of the printing of election result sheets was swept under the carpet. The inspector that was shot is a policeman. His wife is also a police woman attached to Elekahia Police Division.