Dr. Dakuku Peterside, governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress, (APC), in Rivers State has described the allegation of cultism against him by the Rivers State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP), as unkind and uncharitable.
For him, this is taking politics of mudslinging too far. This latest evil and immoral accusation, he believes, is an attempt to destroy his hard-earned reputation.
The APC candidate who stated this in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital called on politicians to focus on issues that would improve the living standards of their people rather than resorting to criminal and baseless accusation and cheap blackmail that are capable of exacerbating the already tensed political atmosphere in the state.
According to Peterside, this accusation runs contrary to his ideals as a practising Christian and preacher of the Gospel. “I am amused by this baseless allegation because as a Christian, I know where I stand with Christ. And any attempt by anybody or group to tarnish my hard earned reputation will be resisted and challenged.
“I never belonged to any secret society or cult group all my life including my university days and I will never be. For emphasis sake, let me unequivocally state that I was never a member of any cult as alleged by my accusers.
“From 1986 to 2011, I was a member of Church of God Mission International but for distance, I had to change my denomination to Salvation Ministries and my pastor can attest to my undiluted Christian life and spiritual standing. Curiously, this unfortunate allegation is coming from a party that Rivers People and the Christian community are alleging of parading known Ogboni members.
“Perhaps this is a diversionary tactics to divert attention from the demand of the Christian community in Rivers State that those who aspire to the high office of governor must have high moral and spiritual standing. And that the church resolve not to vote for anybody with secret society background is firm and well known, and this is highly commendable. I can say without any fear that I was never and will never join any cult.
“For me, the issues before the electorate go beyond unfounded and criminal accusation. I am aware that Rivers people know all of us and our moral standing and character, including the issue of Christianity and where I stand. One would have expected my accusers to face the real issues of providing quality leadership rather than crying wolf where there is none.
“I am an open book! In my days both at Okrika Grammar School, OGS and Rivers State University of Science and Technology where I served as National President of National Union of Rivers State Students, NURSS, among other positions, I did not join any cult group not even with the excuse of youthful exuberance. This accusation is therefore unjustified and should be disregarded.
“I consider this a flagrant assault on my reputation and integrity and I am not going to take this lying low. Therefore, I am going to challenge this affront on my person and character in the court of law”, he said.