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Rivers Crisis: Police Warn Against LG Employees Monday Planned Protest

This is as the CTC Chairmen of the 23 LGAs, have expressed support for the continued barricade of the council secretariats by the police.

The Rivers State Police Command, has warned against Monday’s planned protest by the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees, (NULGE).

In a statement released on Sunday night, police spokesperson, Grace Iringe-Koko, said the police are aware of the protest.

The police explained that although they respect people’s rights to gather, they strongly advised against the protest to avoid infiltration.

“The Rivers State Police Command has become aware of the planned protest by the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE), scheduled for June 24, 2024. While the Command recognizes and respects the right to lawful assembly, it has credible intelligence that this protest will be infiltrated and hijacked by hoodlums seeking to cause disruption and mayhem within the State.

“Consequently, the Command strongly advises the organisers to suspend the planned protest to prevent a possible breakdown of law and order. The Police will take all necessary lawful measures to protect the lives and properties of every resident in Rivers State. The Command has vowed to apprehend and prosecute any person or group that attempts to disrupt the peace,” the statement read in part.

To ensure the safety and security of the public, the Rivers State Commissioner of Police, CP Olatunji Disu, said he had deployed police officers to the secretariates of all 23 Local Government Areas in the State.

“These officers will remain in their respective locations until the threat of disruption of peace is deemed to have ceased,” the statement added.

CP Disu reassured the residents of state, that the command has implemented comprehensive security measures to safeguard lives, and property, and ensure unhindered traffic flow, fostering a peaceful environment for all lawful activities.

He urged law-abiding residents, to go about their daily routines without fear, as robust measures have been strategically deployed to guarantee their safety and well-being.

Rivers LG Caretaker Bosses Kick Against Protests

This is as the Caretaker Committee Chairmen of the 23 Local Government Areas in Rivers State, have expressed support for the continued barricade of the council secretariats by the police.

The chairmen stated this under the aegis of Association of Local Governments of Nigeria (ALGON) at a briefing in Port Harcourt, the state capital, on Sunday.

The Chairman of the association and Administrator of Port Harcourt Local Government Area, Ezebunwo Ichemati, warned against protest at the council headquarters on Monday.

He said the protest is a sinister plot to cause anarchy and chaos to actualise the call for a state of emergency in the state.

Ezebunwo said, “The planned protest is not in the interest of the local governments and the state in its entirety. Rather, it is a calculated attempt by enemies of our dear state to paint the people of the state in bad light, unleash mayhem while at it, and use it to further buttress their inordinate call for the declaration of a state of emergency in our dear state.”

He explained, “We emphatically state that we, members of the Association of Local Governments of Nigeria, Rivers State Chapter, and our people are in support of the police decision to take control and protect all local government council secretariats until further directive on the matter.”

Ezebunwo stated that since assumption of duty of the caretaker committee chairmen, no one tried to forcefully take over or gain access to any of the local government secretariats in line with Governor Siminalayi Fubara’s directive, until the police withdrew or removed whatever barriers put in place to protect government assets.

He added, “We want to categorically state that we are not in any way linked to the planned protest, as it is inimical to the progress and well-being of the people of the state, considering the sinister plots by some desperate politicians to take advantage under the guise of protest, to cause chaos and destabilise governance in the state.”

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