—Your act is draconian – Abe
—I am not in a right frame of mind to speak now – Hotel owner
Despite the outrage that greeted the Sunday’s demolition of hotels by Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, the governor has further justified his actions saying the hotel owner unleashed thugs on members of the state COVID-19 taskforce.
Wike in a statewide broadcast insisted that the demolition of the two hotels in Eleme was done in line with extant laws explaining that the thugs severely injured some members of the taskforce.
He said: “Similarly, we acted against the hotelier because, apart from using the facility to jeopardize the lives of our citizens in violation of the extant law, the owner audaciously unleashed thugs led by the Eleme Local Government Youth Leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and inflicted severe injuries on our taskforce members who went to enforce the law against the continued operation of the hotel.
“As we speak, nobody knows the fate of the lives of most of the victims of that brazen and deadly attack given the severity of the head injuries they sustained.
“And so, we’ve done no wrong as all our actions were taken in good faith and justified by, under and within the purview of the Executive Orders, which have neither been challenged nor set aside by any competent court of law.”
Wike, who said he would not take issues with some critics, noted that he remained focused on protecting Rivers people.
He said: “Therefore, while we welcome genuine criticisms directed towards strengthening our intervention measures; it is no use taking issues with uninformed critics and social media legal practitioners who, blinded and prodded by sheer politics, bias and hatred, have opted to demonize and paint our lawful and responsible actions in bad light.
“Granted that we may not have totally achieved our targets, but we are convinced that, so far, the lockdown and the other measures have impacted greatly in containing and preventing the onslaught of the pandemic on Rivers State.
“We therefore thank the entire people of Rivers State for the overwhelming understanding you have shown even as you continue to endure the pains of the restrictions on your well-being and fundamental freedoms.”
But the owner of Prodest Hotel, one of the faculties demolished by the government, Promise Gogorodari, said he did nothing wrong lamenting that he erected the hotel to provide jobs for people.