Operatives of the Imo State Police Command have taken over the secretariat of the All Progressives Congress located at Imo State University Junction in Owerri.
The development came on the heels of APC’s nationwide ward congresses held on May 5, which were marred by crisis in the state. The national leadership of the party had announced the postponement of the Imo State Local Government congresses which took place across other parts of the country last weekend.
This is even as unidentified hoodlums last Friday allegedly set the party secretariat on fire amidst a downpour.
The fire, which mostly affected the inner parts of the secretariat, was said to have destroyed vital party documents and equipment.
The APC state chairman, Hillary Eke, had told The PUNCH that he had petitioned the Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, over the fire at the secretariat on May 5.
He had said that members of staff of the secretariat “identified those who launched an attack on the secretariat while the ward congress was going on across the 305 electoral wards in the state.”
When our correspondent visited the secretariat on Monday, armed policemen were seen manning the entrance, with their Hilux van packed by the side.
Nobody was allowed entry into the secretariat, even as the building was locked up.
Also, no secretariat workers or party official was seen around. When contacted, the Police spokesperson, Andrew Enwerem, said that the Police took over the secretariat following the fire outbreak on Friday.
According to Enwerem, the Command leadership had ordered a “thorough” investigation into the circumstances that led to the inferno at the secretariat.
He said that in order not to compromise the process of investigation, the Police had to “temporarily” take over the secretariat
Enwerem said, “We have temporarily taken over the secretariat following the fire outbreak.
“The Police are investigating and in order not to jeopardise the investigation process, we have to take the secretariat over in the meantime.
“This is to avoid any other attack on the secretariat and to make sure that peace is restored.