An advocacy group within the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Rivers Unity House (RUH), has declared that the embattled governorship candidate of the party in Rivers State, Pastor Tonye Cole, is focused on removing all legal hurdles against his emergence as the next governor of the state in the forthcoming general elections.
Recall that Federal High Court sitting in Port Harcourt has last Monday ordered the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from recognised Cole and other candidates from both factions of the APC as candidates in the general elections.
RUH, in a statement issued in Port Harcourt by its Convener, Kingsley Wenenda Wali, said Cole is neither deterred nor distracted by the recent development, pointing out that the governorship hopeful is keeping an eye on the Court.
Wali said: “As for the teeming supporters of the change expert and the harbinger of a better future for all of Rivers State, we appeal to you to focus on winning the general election. We want to assure you that Pastor Tonye Cole is keeping an eye on the court and we are assured that the antics of our opponents will fizzle out.
“Our opponents are consumed by the fear of the phenomenon they had underestimated and will stop at nothing to distract us. Tonye Cole is neither deterred nor distracted. He is focused on clearing all the legal and political conspiracies in our march towards victory.
“We shall obey the laws of the land because it is the bedrock of the new order Tonye Cole aspires to install.”
While warning the political class in the state against washing their dirty linens in public, the group stated that Rivers State cannot continue to be in the news for the wrong thing and called on them to calm down and allow justice and the rule of law to prevail.
The statement reads in part: “The Rivers Unity House is using this opportunity to appeal to all well-meaning and even those we are not sure of what they mean, that we should all calm down and allow justice and the rule of law to prevail.
“Rivers State cannot continue to be in the news for the wrong reasons. The national television stations were not established for Rivers people to come to wash their linen. This is certainly not who we are or meant to be. We are a proud and decent people.
“We certainly cannot be the example for those wanting to know what the state of nature is in the 21st century. 2019 elections will not be holding in Rivers State alone, neither are we the most vibrant politicians in Nigeria. We must allow for good morning.”
RUH, which was at the forefront of the clamour for the emergence of Cole as the APC standard bearer, said it does not regret the role it played and lauded the leadership of the party in the state for choosing Cole as its governorship candidate.
It said: “In furtherance of our advocacy for a better Rivers state, we openly advocated for a Tonye Cole governorship. In the true sense of it and in humility, we can freely say without equivocation that we drafted Pastor Tonye Cole into the race.
While not gloating over that, we want to say that we shall remain ever grateful to the leadership and membership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for confirming our trust in a better future for Rivers State, under Apostle Tonye Cole.
“Also, we never expected every member of the party to shout alleluia or hosanna, because the APC is a democratic institution and not a Zombie Republic. This, more than anything else informed we our respect for the feelings anf the democratic expressions of those within the APC family who do not agree with the idea of Tonye Cole.
“This is also why we reject in every ramification the attempt to demonize others and their political views, simply because their views and choices are different from ours. And this includes members of other parties and their leadership.
“We are confident that we have a good case in Tonye Cole. Why do we need to bother too much about the filth in our neighbor’s dungeon, when have an apartment that we can happily and freely showcase as the ideal dwelling place and allow the prospective client decide for himself?”