Dozens of members and supporters of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Port Harcourt, Rivers State on Thursday protest the indiscriminate arrests and detention of members of the party by the Police.
Protesters who came from all the 23 local government areas carried placards which read, ‘Police stop treating APC supporters as criminals’, ‘DCP Amadi, remember Tafa Balogun’, ‘CP Bature, there is God oooooh’, ‘Police, stop killing our people.’
However, the protesters later marched to the State Police headquarters, Moscow Road, Port Harcourt, and the State Office of the Department of State Security (DSS), where they presented their protest letters to the Commissioner of Police, Mr. Dan Bature, and the State Director of DSS, Mr. Abok Nyam.
Presenting a copy of the letter to Governor Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, at the main gate of Government House, Port Harcourt, one of the leaders of the protesters and Assistant National Secretary of APC, Hon. Oji Ngofa, condemned the incessant arrests and intimidation of members and supporters of the party by the Police.
Ngofa, said what members and supporters of APC want is a Nigeria Police that will be apolitical and for all Nigerians and not a Police that is a department of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Receiving the protest letter on behalf of Amaechi, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Mr. George Feyii, pledge the resolve of the state government to take up the matter to the highest authority in the country.
Feyii said, “We as a government recognise that our constitutional responsibility is to protest lives and property and we are doing so to discharge that responsibility to each and every citizen and every resident of Rivers State. We expect the every citizen is protected and there should be no political coloration when we are talking of security.
“As a government, we have done a lot, and we will continue to do a lot to give the security agencies every support that they need to discharge their responsibilities. We will take this up as we hold our Security Council meeting to drum this to the security agencies. We have been doing it before and we will continue to do so. We do not expect any law abiding citizen of Rivers State to be picked up and put in detention unlawfully.
“We do not expect that any person should be denied his constitutional right to express his option to be able to affiliate with anybody or any association and we want ask that you take it from us that as a government, we will take this to the highest quarters and make sure that every citizen of Rivers State expresses his rights to be able to associate, to be able to carry on with activities that are lawful. You can take this from us.”