Rivers Govt Cancels Approval Of Stadium For Atiku’s Campaign Rally
The Rivers State Government has cancelled the approval it granted the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) for the use of the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium, Port Harcourt, for its campaign rally.
The Rivers government had approved the venue for Atiku Abubakar, standard-bearer of the PDP, to use for his campaign rally scheduled to hold on February 11.
The reversal order was contained in a statement signed by the Rivers State Commissioner for Sports, Christopher Green, and addressed to the Director General of the PDP Presidential Campaign Council and Governor of Sokoto State, Aminu Tambuwal.
The rivers commissioner said the decision was taken over an alleged plot by the Atiku campaign in the state to share the facility with a “violent” faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC) loyal to Tonye Cole, the Rivers APC governorship candidate.
“Credible intelligence available to the Government of Rivers State and recent developments now show that your Presidential Campaign Organisation is working in collaboration and in cahoots with a faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State led by Tonye Patrick Cole and that it is the intention of your Presidential Campaign Organisation to accommodate and share the approved facility for your campaign with the said faction of the All Progressives Congress (APC),” the letter reads.
“Government records show that the activities of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State have always been marred by violence due largely to irreconcilable internal conflicts within the party, including shootings and killings in the course of protests arising from the nomination process of delegates for primaries and detonation of explosives in the course of campaigns.
“The Rivers State Government is unable to risk damage to or destruction of the very valuable and prized asset, the Adokiye Amiesimaka Stadium which your use of the same in collaboration with your Tonye Patrick Cole APC faction will definitely expose it to.
“In the circumstance, the Rivers State Government has come to the painful but inevitable decision to withdraw the approval earlier given to you for the use of the stadium and the said approval is hereby withdrawn.“
The development comes days after Nyesom Wike, governor of Rivers, said he will cancel the approval given for the use of the facility if it is accessed before the allotted period.