By Akanimo Sampson,
AHEAD of the expected re-run in Rivers State, where the both the Executive and Legislative elections have been nullified, the two rival political parties: All Progressives Congress (APC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) are locked in a dangerous shadow fighting.
The state is currently awash with accusations and counter-accusations of stock-piling of voters card.
Already, PDP is calling on the security agencies to take action on the alleged provocative acts of the APC.
PDP is alleging that APC is hiding under the guise of conducting a fresh membership registration in the state to unlawfully dispossess citizens of their Permanent Voters Cards (PVCs).
“This political development is of much concern to us because of its criminal inclination, and as it infringes on the fundamental rights of the original owners of the PVCs, who have been stripped of the rights to exercise their franchise and whose personal identities have also been impersonated, undermined, endangered and abused,” PDP said.
PDP Chairman in the state, Felix Obuah, made these allegations in a statement on Monday, by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Jerry Needam.
According to him, ”APC is procuring a PVC at the rate of N5,000 each, and in some cases, they forcefully take it, through intimidation and threat from the electorate”.
The party particularly mentioned the Ogoni area, Ogba-Ndoni Egbema, Port Harcourt, Obio-Akpor, Etche, Ahoada East, Ahoada West, Opobo/Nkoro, Andoni, Oyigbo Local Government Areas, and the Kalabari axis as where the PVC stock-piling are taking place.
But, Eze Chukwuemeka Eze, one of the media chiefs of the APC in the state in a swift reaction said, ”this kind of a wild allegation can only come from the filthy mouth of a drowning party like the PDP. We do not have such money to buy voters card.
“There is no gainsaying the fact that the good people of Rivers are very eager to take full advantage of the opportunity offered them, to instal an APC government to redeem them from the clutches of maladministration.”
Apparently unshaken, PDP says the actions of APC negates the very essence for which the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) conceived and produced the PVC.
While calling on Rivers people to stop releasing their PVCs to agents of APC, PDP also urged community leaders to check the trend and not allow their communities to be used in perpetrating electoral fraud.