Let everyone win in Rivers State....

By John Okiyi Kalu on

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If the rerun polls in Rivers continue to cost human lives the losers are Rivers people and there is no single winner.

It also does not speak well of the people and their leaders across political divide.

We made all those noise during Abia polls and the reruns (twice we had rerun polls) and yet not even a single Abian lost his life as a result. Our leaders never abused themselves publicly and I strongly doubt if anyone can remember a single gutter speech Dr Okezie Ikpeazu made against Dr Alex Otti or vice versa.

We fired oral bullets (Egbe Onu) but knew that all the combatants were our people and all necessary measures were taken to ensure that no lives were lost. The only weapons deployed were our pens and brains.

What exactly is wrong with my brothers in Rivers State? Especially the social media vuvuzelas.
Can't you see that all these incendiary comments from politicians you are republishing with glee are contributing immensely to the current tensions? If your politicians have gone mad must you advertise their madness with billboards?

Personally I flinch after reading some materials coming out from our beloved Rivers of hope and the land flowing with oil and wealth.

Onye mere anyi ihea? Who has done this to my great Rivers people? The only people who turned  a city into a beautiful garden.

Please if you are a registered voter in Rivers state just go and vote then go home and wait for results to be announced. No politician's ambition is worth your blood and whether you like it or not after this election winners and losers alike will abandon us, the common folks.

Where are their children, brothers and sisters? How many carry guns and machetes for their fathers and relatives? Are you not a fool? A very big fool.

All those soldiers and policemen that have flooded Rivers state must realize that they are there to keep the peace. Not to support any of the parties or turn themselves to witnesses for any party at election tribunals.

Soldiers should patrol the streets and stay away from polling and collation centers. Police officers at polling units are not expected to carry arms and armed policemen should not come close to poling units. Let unarmed voters, party agents and election officials take care of polling and collation units as required by law.

Whoever attacked and killed those 2 soldiers must be brought to justice and not treated as a political matter. There is nothing political about attacking soldiers and soldiers themselves should not inject themselves into political processes. Their duties are well spelt out: protect the streets and communities only.

INEC should insist on doing the right thing the right way. Caution your officials against writing of results as that appears to be the only game plan of one of the parties involved in this election. Remember that if you do the wrong thing Rivers will go up in flames and you will never spend whatever you are given peacefully.

There is no peace for the wicked.

Let us learn to treat politics as what it is; a game where someone must win or lose. Spilling blood because of politics is the height of barbarism and it is unacceptable everywhere in the world. Only brainless fools resort to violence with or without provocation.

Voters should not be afraid to go out and cast their votes on Saturday. If they fail to turn out they have given room for results to be written by those who desperately want power for their own selfish reasons.

Hopefully, the judiciary will not regret their rulings that gave rise to these rerun polls. I still personally wonder if this poll would have been conducted if legislative election petition matters had ended up at the Supreme Court.

After all these reruns we should take a second look at our electoral laws with emphasis on card readers and the litigation processes. Enshrine card reading in the electoral law and make it compulsory. Introduce electronic voting and allow all petitions to end at the Supreme Court.

If we end up without any further loss of lives in Rivers all of us have won. Please let us win.



Posted on March, 18 2016

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