Crisis is brewing in the Ikwere Local Government chapter of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Rivers State, following the ambition of the Executive Chairman of the council, Samuel Nwanosike, to retain his position for a second term.
It was gathered that Nwanosike’s move has divided the party in the council, with some notable party chiefs kicking against his ambition and calling for a fresh candidate.
The crisis was said to have deepened at the weekend when some youths invaded a meeting held at the Port Harcourt residence of a former Governor of the state, Celestine Omehia and dispersed it.
The meeting had in attendance Omehia, a member representing Ikwere-Emohua Federal Constituency at the National Assembly, Boniface Emerengwa and other PDP leaders in the council.
The angry youths reportedly attacked the party chiefs and inflicted injuries on Omehia including a cut on his right hand.
A source, who spoke in confidence, said while Omehia was injured during the fracas, Emerengwa was seriously mishandled by the youths, who stopped the gathering.
The source said it took the intervention of Governor Nyesom Wike and the police to restore peace at the area adding that some of the youths were later arrested by the police.
Nwanosike, a loyalist of Wike, was said to be facing stiff opposition to his bid to recontest the local government poll scheduled for 2021and secure a second term in office.
But some PDP leaders were said to have insisted that Nwanosike having served as a caretaker committee chairman and as an executive chairman should give way for another party loyalist to occupy the position.
The Media Aide to the Chairman, Mr. Chris Omodi, clarified that the incident had nothing to do with his boss saying it was internal squabbles of the party leaders in their ward.
He described persons linking the chairman to the fracas as people of the underworld explaining that while the incident took place in Wars 12, the chairman is from ward nine.
He insisted that nobody beat up Omehia and no one mishandled the federal lawmaker.
He said: “It is not true that the chairman has anything to do with the incident. Those saying so are men of the underworld. What happened there was a party internal squabble.
“The party leaders were just having a small quarrel with their kinsmen. Nobody fought and beat up the former governor. Nobody handled Omerengwa. It was just a small fracas.
“What happened there has nothing to do with the second term ambition of the executive chairman. My boss is not even from that ward. It is an internal problem of ward 12, Igruta. My boss is ward 9, Omagwa.”