Rivers Rerun: Wike Swears in Judicial Commission of Inquiry into Violence, Killings

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Ernest Chinwo in Port Harcourt

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, has sworn in a Judicial Commission of Inquiry into the violence/killings that affected the March 19 rerun legislative elections, with a charge to the commission to get to the root of the matter.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had suspended elections in eight local government areas of the state on reasons of violence and killings.

A serving member of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC), Samuel Okonta, was also killed while working as an ad hoc staff of INEC in the elections.

Swearing in the members of the commission under the chairmanship of Justice Monima Wenike Danagogo yesterday, Wike decried the violence witnessed during the rerun elections, saying it was necessary to ascertain the root causes with a view to checking a recurrence in the future.

He charged the commission to identify those involved in the killings, those killed and the scope of violence during the elections.

The governor also charged the commission to identify property damaged in the course of the violence and the owners of such property.

He urged the chairman of the Judicial Commission of Inquiry to use his experience to guide other members towards making necessary recommendations that will enhance political stability and peace in the state.
Wike said : “The commission has one month beginning from today to submit its report. We must know those involved in the violence and killings.

“We must get to the root of the violence and killings during the March 19 rerun elections. Since we were not at the location of the violence, we rely on the Judicial Commission of Inquiry to investigate what took place.”

Responding, Justice Danagogo assured the governor that the commission would work without fear or favour.