The blockade on the road to the Rivers State Government Official's quarters on Thursday September 12 by the Nigerian Police, thus effectively preventing the Governor and his entourage from passing depicts the abysmal level of impunity and primitivism that the current Administration at Aso Rock has descended to.
Similarly, the justification of such acts by the ruling Peoples’ Democratic Party (PDP) through its National Publicity Secretary, is questionable because if truly they intended only to prevent access to the so-called Secretariat of the factional PDP, then they could have done that by sealing it off, as they did the Headquarters in Abuja without resorting to closure of a major road.
That they didn’t do that only revealed the apparent intention to embarrass the Governor and the over seventy former speakers of State Houses of Assembly, who had been in the State for a meeting, and were in his convoy, and prevent them from accessing the Government Quarters.
Such culture of impunity by this Administration can only heighten the climate of fear and violence in the land, and that is unhealthy for our democracy.
When the Governor of a State who is the State number one citizen and the Chief Security Officer of his State is capable of being subjected to such harassment, it shows that other citizens are not safe either.
Furthermore, the penchant for disrespecting court orders on the issues at stake by the players in the PDP crisis is a clear violation of the Constitution and the laws of the land; these acts of lawlessness and dictatorial tendencies must stop now.
And finally, these events in Rivers State and others across the country once more reinforces the urgent need for the creation of States and Local Council Police, and the National Assembly in the ongoing Constitutional Review must see to it that the constitutional provisions regarding the control and deployment of police contingents are amended to accommodate this, so that every State and Local Government has its own police subject to its peoples representatives in the State and Local Assemblies.
We call on the lawmakers to set aside selfish considerations and do this for the growth of this nation. This is the only way to prevent the incessant heating of the polity.
It is the only lasting way to preserve our democracy and collective freedom because a situation where the entire police force of the nation is under the control of the Presidency is not healthy for a constitutional democracy, and often results in abuse of authority and powers, as we are increasingly witnessing.