The Police in Rivers State has said the organisers of a music concert in Buguma, Asari-Toru Local Government Area which was disrupted when a popular Nigerian artist, Teniola Akpata popularly known as Teni, was performing last week did not apply for security.
Also, the police command denied reports that its operatives fired gunshots that scared the A-list musician and ended her performance abruptly.
Recall that the ‘Case’ crooner, who headlines the concert, was already on stage thrilling fans before a melee suddenly ensued from amongst the crowd.
The skirmish which was later discovered to be a misunderstanding between two youths resulted in a fight and pelting of stone and bottles, forcing the organizers to whisk off Teni to safety.
But the spokesperson of the state Police Command, Grace Iringe-Koko, while speaking to newsmen in Port Harcourt insisted that no police officer fired a gunshot during the event.
Iringe-Koko said for a show of such magnitude, the organisers ought to have applied to the Commissioner of Police for security, but said the command never received any application or request.
“No police officer from Rivers State Police Command fired any gunshot that day. Normally if they have such an event, they are supposed to write an application to the Commissioner of Police.
“Then the Commissioner of Police will direct the Area Commander covering that Degema axis, while the Degema Area Commander will also assign it to the Divisional Police Officer over there at Buguma that will cover that event.
“But there was no application of such. The DPO did not have any knowledge of it. Perhaps the DPO might know they have an event and say maybe his men should just stroll around on patrol. But there was no application of such to cover that event,” she explained.
PMAN debunks cult clash
Meanwhile, the entertainers in Rivers State have dismissed claims that the Buguma incident would discourage artists from visiting the oil-rich state.
Sole Administrator of the Performing Musicians Association of Nigeria in Rivers State, Ibitoru Green, popularly known as Lady IB, said this to newsmen in Port Harcourt.
While noting that when there was some level of insecurity in the state, visitors were trooping into the state, much less now that the state was peaceful and safe, even as she dismissed claims that the incident may have been a cult clash.
“When there was some shooting in the state, people were still coming to the state, is it now that we no longer have it that they won’t come? People will still come because the state is safe,” Green stated.
On what caused the confusion that ended the show abruptly, she said, “What I know is that it was a misunderstanding between some people. I will not use the word miscreants, because of N200 change.
“One person said give me my change and before you know it, there was an exchange of blows, throwing of bottles and it escalated.
“It was not a cult rival thing. So they (artists) will come. They are well secured as far as I am concerned. They don’t have a problem. Buguma is a peaceful place. My advice is that security should be made available.”
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