GOVERNOR Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano State has vowed to drag his Rivers State counterpart Governor Nyesom Wike to court for having the temerity to demolish a mosque in the state capital Port Harcourt.
Last week, environmental officers from the Rivers State government demolished the Rainbow Town Central Mosque in the Trans-Amadi Area of Port Harcourt. Governor Ganduje, whose state has the highest number of Muslims in Nigeria, described the incident as a sad story and promised to take all necessary lawful action against the Rivers State government.
Abba Anwar, Governor Ganduje’s chief press secretary, said the mosque demolition was shocking and promised that necessary lawful action must be taken over the happening. He added that Governor Ganduje would institute legal action against this demolition of the mosque as well contest it with the appropriate authorities for redress.
“We received this information with high degree of shock. I am assuring the general public that, all necessary action against this demolition will be taken through appropriate authorities.
“As government, we have started touching appropriate quarters against the demolition. Kano State is known for peaceful coexistence between Muslims and Christians, we should, therefore, improve on that and remain calm and peaceful, as people should live peacefully with one another,” Governor Ganduje added.
Former Kano State Governor Ibrahim Shekerau, has lambasted Governor Wike over the demolition of the mosque, describing it as unacceptable. Two months ago at a crusade organised by a church in Port Harcourt, Governor Wike has said that Rivers State was a Christian state and the demolition is seen in this light.
“I repeat once again without apologies, Rivers is a Christian state. That is why nobody can touch us. When it mattered most, the Christian community prayed and God heard your prayers,” Governor Wike had said.
However, Governor Wike described the current furore as unfortunate, adding that the report is false and was planted by mischief makers to create disaffection. Addressing journalists at the location of the said mosque, Governor Wike said there was no mosque hence nothing was demolished.
Governor Wike added: “I received calls from several prominent Nigerians on the news being circulated online. 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 as the truth is that people came here to erect illegal structures. There was no approval from the state government for any structure to be erected here and 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.”