The damaged building

Okafor Ofiebor/Port-Harcourt

Senator Magnus Abe representing Rivers South East has reacted to the attack on the factional secretariat of the All Progressives Congress (APC) loyal to him on Saturday in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State.

The senator vowed that the vandalization of the secretariat on Saturday by hoodlums will not truncate the planned official opening of the building.

Abe who spoke in Bori, headquarters of Khana local Government Council area, told his supporters that the journey they are embarking on is a journey to the Government House of Rivers state.

He described the attack on the secretariat as unlawful and act of intimidation of his supporters. He vowed that a new date will be announced for the opening of the secretariat.

“Our journey is a journey to the Bricks House of Rivers State. No amount of guns, no amount of intimidation will stop us from what we are doing. So don’t respond to frustrated people. When they shoot at you, dodge, but we must make sure that we have people around who will make it impossible for them to shoot at you.

“So the day we will open the office, I don’t want to announce it here because I have to meet with the party Chairman and find out from him. The party Chairman is Chief Peter Odike. The day he will open the office, I will be there. Will you be there? Will you be there? So we will be there.

“Those people who think that they can intimidate us, they make me laugh. If they know how determined we are, if they know how committed we are, if they know how much we are prepared for this journey, they will not even bother,” he told supporters.

Items pulled down by the vandals

However, Dr Dakuku Peterside, the Director General of Nigerian Maritime and Safety Agency, NIMASA, and the former governorship candidate of APC in the state has absolved the Minister of Transportation and former governor Chibuike Amaechi and the state party chairman, Ojai I Ojeda of sending hoodlums to attack the factional party secretariat.

“I acknowledge that there are issues within the party that the national leadership is handling. That does not warrant opening a parallel state secretariat. It is worse for hoodlums to violently attack the factional secretariat. Our leader, Amaechi, like we all know for more than two decades, is a believer in exercising our rights in the temple of justice and the rule of law,” the NIMASA boss stated.

“My brother, Distinguished Senator should also look inwards because from unconfirmed reports, I learnt that some of his members are at loggerheads over contracts awarded to them by NDDC,” he added.

He called on security agencies to track down the perpetrators and bring them to justice.

Some unidentified hoodlums on Saturday attacked the factional secretariat, pulling down the APC flags and poles and vandalized doors and the ceiling.

Also condemning the attack, Chief Anabs Sara-Igbe, an elder statesman and spokesman of Pan Niger Delta Forum, PANDEF, expressed shock over the incident.

He described it as unholy, barbaric, unacceptable and condemnable.

“I totally condemn it and also call on all and sundry to join me in condemning this shameful act. Politics is all about ideas, manifestos and programmes and in democracy we are not all expected to follow, accept or tow a single opinion, idea or instruction. We are at liberty to form our opinions and propagate our views. Someone disagree with you is not enough to take the laws into your hands and carry out this shameful and faceless act.

“There is no permanent friend or enemy in politics. Your friend today might turnout to be your greatest enemy, likewise your enemy might turnout to be your best friend. This type of politics will never grow the State at all. It will rather take us back in our political, economic and social development. It will also not help the people of the State, Niger Delta region and the country at large. So let us stop this nonsense and think of how we will attract good governance into the State and the country at large,” he said.