Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers may have started taking his pound of flesh against those he percieved as his political foes in Rivers, who betrayed him and backed Atiku Abubakar’s presidential ambition after a combined team of security operatives on Friday sealed a hotel, bar and a filling station in Port Harcourt, where it was alleged that some politicians were hobnobing with cultists.
Many people, including staff of the facilities were arrested during the operation.
The facilities sealed are Preray Hotel at Eagle Island, Priscy’s Bar in Elekahia and Mega Tool Filling Station along Ojoto Street in the Diobu axis, all in the Rivers State capital.
This comes days after Governor Wike claimed in a state-wide broadcast that some politicians were recruiting cultists and ex-convicts to destabilise the state over their 2023 political ambitions.
No official reason was given for the operation as at the time of filing this report, but it is suspected to be a clampdown on perceived political opponents.
It was gathered that a team of security operatives, including police tactical units in several patrol van, stormed the facilities in the wee hours of Friday, effected the arrests and sealed the premises
CHECKPOINTCHARLEY was informed that the sealed facilities are owned by loyalists to a former Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon Austin Opara.
Opara, a former ally of Wike, is currently allegedly supporting the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar.
However, in a statement by Wike’s media aide, Kelvin Ebiri, the governor said the government is aware that owners of hotels and entertainment centres are in the process of giving out their premises to politicians and political parties as a convenient base for the gathering of “political thugs”.
The statement partly read, “Similarly, we will not allow any political party, be it the All Progressives Congress, the Peoples Democratic Party or the Social Democratic Party to threaten the safety and security of lives and property during the campaigns with mayhem, thuggery or violence.
“Accordingly, we have already alerted and set the security agencies on the trail of these misguided politicians and leaders of political parties and stop them in their tracks with the full weight of the law.”
The governor warned that the government will pull down hotels and other entertainment places that are linked with such criminal political activities.
The state Commissioner of Police, Friday Eboka, had yet to respond to inquiries as at the time of filing this report.