The leader of the defunct militant group, Niger Delta Vigilante, Chief Ateke Tom, has said no political party would be allowed to hold any political rally in Okrika before the general elections.
He said his stance was in line with the unanimous decision of Okrika stakeholders which was taken to preserve peace, law and order in the Wakirike nation. The decision of the stakeholders has put a hold on plans by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to go back to Okrika to hold another rally after its last attempt was disrupted by explosions and gunfire.
Addressing journalists a few days after the botched Okrika rally, Chairman of the APC in Rivers state, Dr. Davies Ikanya, had said, “We will still go back to Okrika for our governorship campaign rally. Okrika is part of Rivers State and we want to take the message of our party to our people there.”
Ateke spoke Tuesday [Feb. 24] evening at the end of a town hall meeting of stakeholders in Okrika.
His words: “The people of Okrika have spoken and I am in support of the position that they have taken. My people have spoken: no more political rallies in Okrika. I am in support of their decision. Who am I to say no? You want them to kill me?
“When the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) held their rally there was no problem. But there was violence when the All Progressives Congress (APC) staged their rally in Okrika, there was violence and people were injured and property destroyed. A police man, we were told, was unfortunately killed. So, PDP and APC, there will be no more rallies in Okrika. We don’t want violence in Okrika anymore.”