Police disperse APC protesters with tear gas in Rivers

Operatives of the Nigeria Police on Thursday fired tear gas at the protesting members of the All Progressives Congress in Rivers State.

The state APC members and supporters had at 8am blocked the main entrance to the state headquarters of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Port Harcourt to press for the listing of their candidates in the Saturday and March 2, 2019 General Elections.

Displaying placards with various inscriptions to condemn the party’s exclusion from the ballot, the protesters threatened there would be no election in Rivers State if INEC failed to list their candidates for the polls.

Some of the messages read, ‘No APC, no election in Rivers State’, ‘INEC, return Rivers APC to the race’, ‘INEC, put our candidates on the list’, and ‘INEC, don’t be partial.’

The police, who were obviously not satisfied with the blocking of the INEC gate by the protesters after their leaders had left, warned them to stay away from the place.

 The security agents fired gunshots into the air before releasing tear gas that forced party supporters to leave the scene.

Earlier, the leader of the protesters, Orji Ngofa, said, “It is painful that INEC hurriedly delisted us when Justice Omotosho of the Federal High Court gave ruling, but they have not had time to relist our names following the order of Court of Appeal.

“You (INEC) were in a mad haste to remove our names. So, we have come here to ask you to comply with the court order. INEC is an institution established by the laws of Nigeria and it must not be disobedient to the laws.

 “PDP filed a matter in court, the court gave ruling and the INEC obeyed. We approached the Court of Appeal, which gave stay of execution and even the Supreme Court affirmed it, but you, INEC, has refused to relist us.”

The Resident Electoral Commissioner in the state, Obo Effanga, told the APC supporters that he would relay their message/letter to the national headquarters of the commission.
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