The African Action Congress (AAC) says Akpo Bomba Yeeh, its governorship running mate in Rivers State who resigned on Monday, took the decision after he was kidnapped by agents of Governor Nyesom Wike.
Yeeh had announced his resignation from the AAC and consequent defection to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), citing the "complete hijack of the structure and administration of our Party by a faction of the APC in Rivers State led by the Minister of Transportation, Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, for his personal political ambition".
He also claimed Amaechi planned to rig the governorship election using officials of the Nigeria Army, Police, Department of State Service (DSS) and the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (F-SARS).
He added that he was forced to "sign an undated letter of resignation as the Deputy Governor of Rivers State to pave way for Rotimi Amaechi to nominate another person of his choice as Deputy Governor".
However, AAC has countered those claims, saying instead that Yeeh was kidnapped, bribed with N200million and a Sports Utiity vehicle (SUV) and promised a role in Wike’s next cabinet.
“It’s not a surprise to us the African Action Congress (AAC) that our deputy governorship candidate, Chief Akpo Bomba Yeeh, claimed he has resigned his candidature, and defected immediately to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP),” read a statement signed by Felix Enimini, Publicity Secretary to Progress Ogbokuma, the Rivers State Chairman of the party.
“The resignation/defection of Akpo Bomba Yeeh indicates high level of desperation of Governor Wike and the Peoples Democratic Party cohorts to retain power after the good people of Rivers State have rejected them by voting overwhelmingly for the African Action Congress (AAC) on the 9th of March, 2019.
“We wish to inform the general public that our deputy governorship candidate Akpo Bomba Yeeh was kidnapped by Wike agents at about 2:30pm on Sunday and was taken to government house in Port Harcourt where he was forced to resign/defect to the PDP and the sum of two hundred million naira, an SUV and accommodation were given to him. Governor Wike also promise to include him in his cabinet if re-elected into power.
“The press statement by Akpo Bomba Yeeh was written by Special Adviser to Wike on Media and Publicity and the allegations made against His Excellency, Rt Hon Rotimi Amaechi and the African Action Congress (AAC), were cooked up by Wike and his cohorts.
“The resignation/defection of Akpo Bomba Yeeh was under duress and inducement by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
“Let me use this opportunity to debunk the purported rumour by the Peoples Democratic Party that the APC is holding Engr Biokpomabo Awara and his Chairman Progress Ogbokuma hostage so that they won't defect to the PDP.
“Engr Biokpomabo Awara and his Chairman are men of integrity. No amount of money can compel and entice them to dance to Wike's tune of "everyman has a price tag", thereby defecting to the PDP to enable him achieve his desperate ambition.
“We the African Action Congress(AAC) strongly believe that our victory is sure with the help of God and the support of the good people of Rivers State.”