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Court stops Rivers APC LG congress


Chief Rotimi Amaechi, Leader, APC Rivers State
Senator Magnus Abe

By Richards Nzemeke

 A High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has stopped the All Progressves Congress (APC) Local Government Congress earlier scheduled for May 12.

Justice Chiwendu Nwaogu gave the ruling in Port Harcourt on Friday after the Police quelled a riot by unknown persons within the court premises.

The riot led to a temporary closure of the State’s Judiciary Complex and the brutalisation of some journalists, litigants and lawyers by thugs around the court premises.

Sen. Magnus Abbe (APC), representing Rivers South East Senatorial District in the senate, had filed a Motion on Notice to stop the congress.

The motion followed a controversial ward congress on May 5 in the state.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the riot in the court complex was an attempt to stop the court session.

However, the police responded by shooting sporadically into the air to disperse the rioters alleged to be supporters of a faction of APC in Rivers.

Many glass doors, windows and cars’ windscreens were smashed in the court premises by the rioters who were alleged to have earlier locked all entrances to the court to stop the court from sitting.

Eyewitnesses told NAN that the padlocks were later destroyed to allow judicial workers into the premises.

Justice Chiwendu Nwaogu later sat to grant an order restraining the APC in the state from holding its local government congress scheduled for Saturday.

He also adjourned until June 26 for hearing.

Meanwhile, about 50 armed policemen have been deployed to maintain peace in the complex.

Mr. Nnamdi Omoni, a Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) and spokesman for the command, confirmed the incident.

He also told NAN that police personnel were on the field collecting detailed information on the incident.

“Our men are still on field collecting information about the incident,” he said.

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