African Independent Television/Ray Power’s owners, Daar Communications, have been given 48 hours to remove the property where their Port Harcourt transmission facility is located or face having it demolished by the RIVERS State Government.
The move is thought to have been motivated by a long-running political dispute between Governor Nyesom Wike and High Chief Raymond Dokpesi, owner of Daar Communications, but the governor insists AIT/Ray Power has no legal claim to the large space it currently occupies in the capital city of Rivers state and the eviction order is not motivated by politics.
The most recent eviction notice was sent out on March 20, 2023, addressed to “To Whom It May Concern,” and bearing the subject line “Proposed GRA Phase 5 Ozuoba, Port Harcourt Demolition Notice.”
“Following the impending start of the aforementioned project, all structure(s) impacting on the right-of-way of the project have been earmarked for demolition, including your own,” it states. As a result, you are required by this notice to dismantle the structure(s) in question within forty-eight (48) hours in order to facilitate quick work progress.
The state government has been requested by the Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ) to reverse its plan to demolish the transmission facility of Daar Communications.
In a statement signed by Stanley Job, Chairman, and Ike Wigodo, Secretary, the NUJ Rivers State Council urged the state government to engage in negotiation with the media group in order to resolve the conflict amicably.
“We think that a fair negotiation and peaceful settlement of the land dispute will benefit the Rivers government and its residents. Regarding the long-standing mutual relationship, regardless of the merit of the quit notice, we would not want the world to witness the Press fighting with the Rivers State Government.
“NUJ will not be pleased to see a media house demolished in Rivers State over a land dispute that can be settled peacefully and amicably,”