Nyesom Wike, Governor of Rivers State, has debunked reports that his administration demolished a mosque in the state.
Governor Wike made the rebuttal when he visited the location of the alleged mosque demolition at Biambo Street, off School Road, situated in Rainbow Estate in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state on Monday.
The governor was alleged to have declared that Rivers State a Christian-dominated territory and, therefore, ordered the knocking of the structure.
But speaking at the alleged demolition site, the governor said it was visibly clear to all present that no mosque was situated in the said area, nothing that the information was “fake news” circulated to smear his image.
Governor Wike 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.”
The governor claimed that some persons allegedly began to erect an illegal structure on the site despite no prior approval and a court order delivered in favour of the state government.
“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.
However, Abubakar Aliyu, Secretary to the Trans Amadi Central mosque, insisted that a mosque under construction was demolished by the state government.
“The mosque was under construction, it was at damp proof course level before it was demolished by operatives of the Ministry of Urban Development on Tuesday, August 20, 2019,” Aliyu told the Punch.
“The ministry had approved our building plan since 2009, we have all the relevant documents. It is a multi-billion Naira mosque project, the approval plan number was written within the site.”