Govenor Nyesom Wike of Rivers state has stated that the state would have witnessed violence if the All Progressives Congress (APC) participated in Saturday’s local government election.
He commended the State Independent Electoral Commission (RSIEC) for the successful conduct of the polls.
Wike made the commendation in an interview with newsmen shortly after monitoring the election in Port Harcourt and Obio/Akpor Local Government Areas.
According to a statement by Simeon Nwakaudu, his media aide, the governor also commended the security agencies for creating the right atmosphere and ensuring that the elections were peaceful.
He said: “Sixty-six out of 68 political parties participated, but no violence. That means that if APC had participated, probably we would have seen violence.
“Sixty-six political parties, no violence, no shooting, nobody has died.
“But, if the APC had participated, they would want to coerce security agencies, they would do all manner of negative things like bringing cultists to shoot.
“You can see that nobody hijacked materials. Everything has been peaceful.’’
The governor also noted that the security agencies played their constitutional roles during the elections.
“I have called the heads of security agencies and commended them for a job well done. That is what I have always said – allow people to vote for those they want,” he said.
Wike said that the message to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was that they could conduct credible elections if they resisted pressures from different quarters.
“INEC can be committed to do the right thing; once they build confidence, every other thing will move on smoothly.
“We have gone round two local government areas; the elections went on peacefully and they were credible. Election materials arrived on time, except for a few places.
“Like this, nobody will complain. Observers from across the board have commended the process,” Wike said.