23rd July, 2011
Dr. Abiye Sekibo ,the governorship candidate of ACN in Rivers State, Southsouth Nigeria, has denied withdrawing the petition against Governor Chibuike Amaechi after collecting between N2 billion and N7 billion naira.
Rather, he said he withdrew the petition when he foresaw that attempts to secure justice through the Election Tribunal were being frustrated by the Rivers state government and its officials.
He foreclosed returning to the Peoples Democratic Party.
Dr Sekibo who broke his silence on the circumstances surrounding the dramatic withdrawal of the petition while addressing a section of the Press in Port Harcourt.
He accused Nyesom Wike, the former Chief of Staff to Governor Amaechi and now Minister of State For Education, of frustrating an attempt by the party to photocopy the relevant documents, he needed to prosecute his petition, at the INEC office in Port Harcourt.
Sekibo also revealed that some of his ACN party members also betrayed the party and used their privileged positions in the party to trade with the PDP-led government in state.
He said because of the announcement of Prof Attahiru Jega, chairman of INEC that party members were allowed to take camera phones and cameras to polling booths, ACN in state bought 5,000 pieces of such devices and distributed to members.
“After the elections, only about 500 of camera phones were returned by members. Some of them took the recordings of electoral malpractices by PDP members to PDP top shots to trade for cash.”
He said contrary to the rumour making the rounds that he collected an amount ranging between N2 billion to N7 billion to withdraw his petition against Amaechi at a meeting allegedly brokered by Dr Peter Odili, the former governor of the state, Sekibo dismissed such rumour as untrue.
The former Transport Minister said he will never sell his birthright and for once in Rivers state, he would be leading the vanguard of opposition in the state to keep Governor Amaechi’s administration on its toes.
By Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt