Port Harcourt—The Rivers state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has denied claims by the APC that its members were behind the disruption of a proposed rally in Omuma Local Government Area of the state
The party through its Spokesman, Chief Ogbonna Nwuke made the denial in a statement issued in response to that of his counterpart in APC, Sogbeye Eli who blamed the attack on PDP members.
He urged the public to disregard the APC allegation describing it as unsubstantiated and saying the community-based crisis was triggered by the unlawful arrest of a young man who is not a politician.
Nwuke said that security men attached to the leader of the APC in Omuma in the company of some operatives of OSPAC had arrested the young man, detained him overnight and beat him mercilessly.
According to the statement, the refusal to hand over their son forced the community people to react adding that the account was well known among the Omuma people.
He said; “We are shocked by a report that is filtering in from Omuma. The report suggests that some unknown persons purportedly belonging to the PDP dismantled the venue of a pro-APC rally this morning in Omuma.
“As usual, the APC propaganda machine has found it convenient to place the blame for what transpired on the PDP.
“While we agree that we are the biggest party in Rivers State, with very strong followership throughout the various local government areas, the PDP categorically absorbs itself from any involvement in the confrontation that took place.
“The truth is that a young man from the community where the rally was to hold was apprehended by security attached to the APC leader in Omuma in the company of some OSPAC members and beaten to a pulp.
We have learnt that the father of the young man who was held at the venue overnight went to plead for the release of his son. Those holding him flatly refused.
“It was at this point that the community people intervened and trouble broke out. This much is true and some witnesses will corroborate this account.
“As a political party, we have no hand in what happened. We challenge the APC to show genuine evidence of the PDP’s involvement in this matter.
“In asking the APC to conduct investigations before dashing to press, we urge Rivers people to ignore lies that are being told by the APC. They are unfounded.”