The Rivers state chapter of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has expressed confidence that the state election petition tribunal will remove Magnus Abe, who is just a “caretaker senator”.
Abe was declared winner of the national assembly rerun election in Rivers southeast senatorial district in December 2016.
The PDP state chapter said it had gone to the tribunal to challenge the declaration of Abe as the winner of the election.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, Felix Obuah, PDP Rivers state chairman, said the declaration of Abe as winner of the election was “a grave error as available records show that the military, SARS personnel and other security agencies massively rigged the election in the whole of the Rivers southeast senatorial district on December 10, 2016 in favour of Mr Abe”.
“The right of the people of Rivers southeast senatorial district to select the candidate of their choice through the ballot box is sacrosanct and must not be toyed with,” Obuah said.
“The PDP will never rest until this injustice against the people is addressed and the opportunity to have a candidate of their choice given to them as of right.”
In the statement, which was signed by Jerry Needam, his special adviser on media and publicity, he said: “The party has sufficient evidence to show that what happened in the Rivers southeast senatorial district on December 10, 2016 was nothing but a display of military bravado against the PDP and the Ogoni people, orchestrated by the combined forces of Magnus Abe, Barry Mpigi, on one hand, and the men of SARS, police and army on the other hand.
“We are upbeat that the PDP would have the last laugh at the election petitions tribunal. Magnus Abe is only a caretaker senator of the All Progressives Congress (APC) who was smuggled into the senate with the connivance of INEC, SARS, army and the police. His tenure in the senate will be short-lived”.
He called on the people of the senatorial district, especially Olaka Nwogu, “whose mandate has been stolen”, to remain calm and hopeful, adding that anything taken through the backdoor would not stand, as Nwogu would surely reclaim his mandate.
He said that “Abe’s desperation for power would soon be exposed as evidenced by his recent clandestine activities”.
“Abe had, in the past weeks, been concocting results in his private residence, just to ensure that they tally with figures manufactured for him by INEC,” he said.
“These were some of the measures being taken by the caretaker senator in anticipation of his fraudulent declaration by the INEC being challenged by the PDP.”