Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has reacted to the reports going round that his government had illegally’ demolished the Trans-Amadi Central Mosque in Port Harcourt, the state capital.
The demolition has been strongly condemned by various Islamic bodies in the country, including the Islamic human rights organization, the Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC).
But Governor Wike has come out to deny demolishing any Mosque in Port Harcourt, saying that the false report was planted by mischief makers to create disaffection.
Addressing journalists at the location on Biambo Street Off, School Road by Mami Market Junction, near Rainbow Estate on Monday., Governor Wike said there was no Mosque on ground, hence nothing was demolished. He said:
“I received calls from several prominent Nigerians on the fake news being circulated online. I have come here with Reporters and you can see there was no Mosque here.
“It is most unfortunate that fickle minded persons will claim that a Mosque was demolished at this place, when no Mosque existed here. The story was concocted by mischief makers to score cheap points”.
Governor Wike explained that some persons started erecting illegal foundation at the disputed land, even though they had no approval to embark on any construction work.
“They came here to erect illegal structure. There was no approval from the State Government for any structure to be erected here.
“The persons who started the foundation had already dragged the State Government to court on the disputed land. The Rivers State Government won the case. What they attempted to do was to start the illegal construction to tie the hands of the State Government “, he said.
The Governor urged the Muslim Community in Rivers State to show him where a Mosque was demolished in the State. He advised them not to allow themselves to be used by politicians to peddle false stories against the Rivers State Government..
Governor Wike said that the State Government operates within the rule of law. He said that the State Government will not be distracted by the illegal circulation of fake reports.
He stated that several Mosques constructed on the approval of the State Government exist across Port Harcourt and other major towns of Rivers State, without the State Government demolishing them.
“The government gave them notice not to do anything on the land. But they went ahead with the illegal foundation and the relevant agency stopped them.
“Why would want to bring down any Mosque , when there are other Mosques across the State? What is the Special interest on this one?