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Wike under fire over hotel demolition for violating lockdown in Rivers

Pascal Oparada

Governor Nyosom Wike of Rivers State has come under blistering attack for demolishing a hotel in the state capital, Port Harcourt on Sunday.

Wike, who supervised the demolition of Prodest Hotel in Eleme, said it will serve as a deterrent to other violators and ‘send a strong message that Rivers State is not joking with the health of its people.’

His action, however, set off a firestorm on social media with many saying the governor went overboard by demolishing the hotel.

Social media buff and career coach, Dipo Awojide said the action of the governor smirks of authoritarianism and asked the owner of the hotel to sue the state government for damages.

“Wike was showing necessary action and ensuring security agencies do their job well. He was commended for that by many & rightly so. But going on to demolish a hotel is definitely way out of order. That sort of action is really condemnable. A fine should have been appropriate, ” Awojide said on Twitter.

Activist, Deji Adeyanju, said the demolition was unnecessary as a simple fine would have sufficed.

READ ALSO: https://www.thexpressng.com/2020/05/11/why-i-demolished-two-hotels-in-rivers-gov-wike/

“The demolition of the hotel was unnecessary. Temporary closure would have been enough. Wike is over-doing it. Those whose property was demolished should seek legal redress, ” Adeyanju said.

Others condemned owners of the hotel for operating during a lockdown despite an order for people to stay at home.

Wike has been in the news lately over his style of enforcement of the lockdown in the state in order to curtail the spread of coronavirus in the state.

Last week, Wike intercepted trailer loads of people believed to be almajiris from the north.

According to reports, the almajaris were hiding in the trail loaded with cows.

Wike ordered that the truck and cows be auctioned off and the almajiri return to their places of origin.