The Ijaw National Congress (INC) has demanded the immediate release of the PDP governorship aspirant and federal lawmaker representing Bonny/Degema Contituenciesin the Federal Houseof Representatives, Hon. Farah Dagogo from detention.
In a statement signed by the INC President, Prof. Benjamin Okaba, the group stated that Dagogo’s continued detention without conviction in a court of law is a clear violation of his fundamental human rights.
The statement alleged that his detention is an orchestrated design by the Gov. Wike’s administration to persecute the Ijaws who are resolved to come together to challenge the governorship of Rivers State.
The statement read in parts,” The INC is particularly miffed at the trumped-up charges against Farah Dagogo that he hired cultists to disrupt the PDP screening exercise which was presided over by his Governor colleague, Sen. Douye Diri of Bayelsa state. Did Gov. Diri ever call him (Gov. Wike) that their lives were under threat on account of the invading cultists? Did the well-fortified security apparatus of Gov. Diri call for security reinforcement because of Gov. Wike’s imaginary marauding cultists? What on earth justifies this premeditated political onslaught against Hon. Farah Dagogo and the Rivers Ijaws? Was the mission essentially to deny him screening so that he would not have a chance to contest the governorship elections against other opponents?
“We wish to remind Governor Wike that Dagogo is as eminently qualified as any other Rivers man or woman to contest for the office of governor on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party. As nobody is denying Wike his right to contest for the office of President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, he too should refrain from scuttling the rights of others to aspire to any elective office in the country, including the office of governor of Rivers State.
” By the current shenanigans, Governor Wike has exposed his pangs to underscore his disdain for an Ijaw successor. We now know that this has been his secret agenda. Let the historic contributions of the Ijaw people to the creation of old Rivers State not be lost on Governor Wike.
“Governor Wike should be reminded that the beauty of democracy underscores free contest and not an imposition. He is not an emperor and therefore cannot single-handedly dictate a successor against globally accepted democratic tenets.
“As a sitting governor, who is exiting office in 2023 after his constitutional two tenures, his politics of succession must be seen to be all-inclusive and not designed overtly or covertly to exclude Ijaw interest in Rivers State”.