Police ‘withdraw Amaechi’s escort’

After a brief lull, the row between Governor Rotimi Amaechi and state police chief Mbu Joseph Mbu resurface yesterday.

Amaechi’s escort commander has been withdrawn by the police, Commissioner for Information Ibim Semenitari claimed last night.

Police Commissioner Mbu reportedly made a request, which was not in the purview of the police officer following which he was removed from his position, Mrs. Semenitari said.

The report could not be confirmed last night as Mbu did not pick his calls.

The police authority earlier in the week declared Amaechi’s Aide-de-camp a deserter for failing to report to the Inspector General of Police as requested. But the state government said the ADC was on medical leave.

The governor’s security is threatened, the Rivers State government said in the statement, which said:

“The redeployment, according to CP Mbu, was because the Escort Commander had refused his directive to “Furnish (the CP) with prior information of the movement of the governor. The Escort Commander is not in charge of the governor’s protocol and cannot have prior knowledge of the governor’s movement, especially in the prevailing circumstances regarding security in the State.

“After redeploying the Escort Commander, CP Mbu also requested the Camp Commandant of Government House, Port Harcourt, to give him prior briefing of the governor’s daily movement – a request which in practice would be difficult to comply with, unless the Camp Commandant gets prior knowledge of the Governor’s movement.

“The Government of Rivers State is most uncomfortable with these developments and their implications for the security of Governor Amaechi. This is more so, as the developments are coming on the heels of the Rivers State Police Command’s declaration of Governor Amaechi’s ADC (which is receiving medical attention) as a deserter.

“This sudden interest of CP Mbu regarding the daily movement of Governor Amaechi cannot be borne out of love. If his intentions were noble and above board, CP Mbu has Governor Amaechi’s telephone number and could have reached him directly to make the request of prior briefing of his movements. Alternatively, he could have written officially to the Secretary to State Government to make the same request.

“This would be the first time, since Governor Amaechi assumed office in 2007, that a Police Commissioner would be requesting prior information of his movement. This was not the case even in the heyday of militancy in Rivers State. As far as we know, this is an exception rather than the rule.

“The fact that CP Mbu waited for the Governor to travel out of Port Harcourt to issue the invitation to policemen attached to Government House is curious and indicative of ulterior motives. His sudden interest in the Governor’s movement is suggestive of a more sinister motive.

“ CP Mbu has not hidden the fact that he holds Governor Amaechi in disdain and would stop at nothing to either harm him or aid those planning to harm him. After all, in May 2013, he allowed ex-militants to barricade the gate into the Government House after parading major streets of Port Harcourt.

“He has even acknowledged before the media that he found nothing wrong in fraternizing with militants.

“We suspect that the request for daily prior briefing on the Governor’s movement may be to furnish strange persons with necessary details of his movement, thereby placing him in harms’ way.

“ At different times, CP Mbu has compromised Governor Amaechi’s security and safety, and even personally led an attack on Government House, Port Harcourt on July 10, 2013. As Commissioner of Police, CP Mbu, refuses to brief the Governor, who is the Chief Security Officer of the state, on the state of security in Rivers State.

“We, therefore, wish to alert Nigerians and the rest of the world that CP Mbu should be held responsible should anything evil happen to the Governor of Rivers State, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi, any principal officer or top government functionary in Rivers State. We believe that his current actions are sufficient warning to us “as a tree that cries out cannot kill anyone on its path”.

Source: The Nation

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