The Rivers police explain the reason for shooting at Fubara.

Busy Bee November 2, 2023
Updated 2023/11/02 at 11:08 AM

The Rivers State Police Command has provided an explanation regarding the incident in which Governor Siminalayi Fubara was attacked during a protest at the state’s House of Assembly complex in Port Harcourt on Monday.

According to the command, the attack was not an intentional act. They clarified that the use of water cannons and tear gas was aimed at dispersing the protesters in order to safeguard the governor from arsonists who posed a threat to the premises and could potentially cause chaos.

In a press release on Wednesday, the spokesperson for the state’s command, Grace Iringe-Koko, revealed that the police had received credible intelligence regarding the plan of an armed group to cause chaos in Port Harcourt, specifically at the State House of Assembly on October 30.

Recalling the recent arson incident at the State House of Assembly, which is currently under investigation, the Deputy Commissioner of Police in charge of Operations promptly deployed armed officers under his supervision to apprehend the troublemakers and safeguard the lives and properties in and around the State House of Assembly.

“At the entrance of the complex, there was a large gathering of more than a hundred young individuals protesting and demanding access to the premises. Their behavior indicated a high likelihood of causing a disturbance and breaching the peace.

As a result, the police resorted to using non-lethal crowd control resources such as tear gas and water cannons to disperse the unruly protesters.

However, after a few minutes, another aggressive group of people arrived at the complex entrance and started moving towards the premises. In response, the police took similar action to engage them. It was at this point that the police noticed the presence of the Executive Governor of the State, Siminalayi Fubara, among the approaching group.”

The police were surprised and shocked to find the governor at the scene without any prior communication. It is usually protocol for the police to accompany the governor’s guard for safety reasons, especially considering the security threat at hand. In light of this, the DC Ops took immediate security measures to ensure the governor’s protection while he and his entourage assessed the damage caused by the fire incident.

It is important to emphasize that the police did not intend to attack the governor or cause harm to anyone, including the chief executive and security officer of the state. Our main role is to protect them, and these claims in the news are false. Given the current situation and the misrepresentation in some media outlets, it is necessary to clarify this.

“Similarly, the Rivers State Police Command has emplaced adequate security measures to ensure that the situation de-escalates and total calm is restored in the affected areas,” the statement added.

The PUNCH reports that the police shot water cannons and tear gas at the entourage of the governor while on their way to access the premises of the Rivers State House of Assembly Complex, which was reportedly burnt down following a crisis among the state lawmakers.

It was also learned that tear gas was used to disperse some lawmakers and protesters after the governor stormed the complex to prevent his impeachment.

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