The Department of State Services, DSS, has arraigned Secretary to the Rivers State Government, SSG, Kenneth Kobani and a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Mr Azubuike Chikere Wanjoku at a Federal High Court in Port Harcourt over alleged violence that during the last rerun elections in the state.
The SSG, Kobani and others whose whereabouts still remain unknown, were specifically charged for an alleged offence punishable by the Terrorism Prevention Act of 2011.
Meanwhile, the SSG pleaded not guilty to the three count charges read to him.
According to the charges, “that you Kenneth Kobani with others at large on or about March 3, 2016 at a meeting held in your residence at Bodo community, Gokana local government did conspire to carry out activities that could cause the breach of the peace and break down of law and order on the 19 March 2016 thereby committing an offence contrary to Section 516 of the criminal code act Count two – that you Kenneth Kobani and others at large on or about March 19 2016 at the premises of INEC office, Gokana LGA, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable court did conduct yourself in a manner that caused the breach of peace by leading and instructing your followers to barricade the entrance of the INEC office, prevent officials of the commission and other adhoc staff from discharging their duties and causing stampede in the vicinity thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under Section 249 d of the criminal code.
“Count three that on or about 19 March, 2016 at the premises of INEC office, Gokana LGA, within the jurisdiction of this Honourable court did hold Mr James Simon, an official of the commission and other adhoc staff hostage until their eventual rescue by security personnel, thereby committed an offence contrary to and punishable under section 11 of the Terrorism prevention act 2011.”
Kobani pleaded not guilty to all the charges.
On his part, Wanjoku who was APC candidate for Ikwerre state House of Assembly constituency seat in the rerun election was charged for allegedly accusing the Ikwerre INEC Electoral Officer, Mr Kingsley Osifu of collecting some amount of money from him to disrupt public order and security, thereby committed an offence punishable under section 516 of the criminal code Act.
The second count charge said the conduct of Wanjoku allegedly obstructed the public officer from discharging his official duty, an act punishable under the criminal code.
The third count charge alleged that Wanjoku threatened to forcefully demand refund of the said money from the INEC officer, thereby committed an offence contrary to criminal code.
He also pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Justice Liman granted him bail with the sum of N500, 000, ordering that he should get a senior civil servant to sign surety for him.
The Judge also ordered that he be remanded in prison custody till the bail condition was met.