As the state-wide curfew imposed on Rivers State enters into its second month, financial experts have said the security measure has negatively affected economic activities in the state.
Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike had, on May 2, 2021 imposed a dusk-to-dawn curfew on the entire state following attacks on security checkpoints and formations across the state leading to the killing of no fewer than 12 security personnel.
Wike later reviewed the curfew on Port Harcourt metropolis, comprising of Port Harcourt City and Obio/Akpor local government areas to ‘between 8:30pm and 6:00am.’
Speaking with LEADERSHIP Weekend in Port Harcourt, a financial expert, Eugene Abels, said considering the long period in which the curfew had been enforced, its measures are no longer effective.
“A governor has the responsibility to protect lives and property and thus, can call for a curfew.
“We do not know if he has the right or if the House of Assembly can authorise him. We suspect that he does not have the power to run a curfew in perpetuity.
“In the immediate, curfew, lockdowns and checkpoints are necessary. These measures in the long run are ineffective. What is effective is strong intelligence gathering, plenty of undercover strike teams to utilise the intelligence.
“The curfew has ruined businesses and the night life economy, which includes but not limited to shops, bars, restaurants, amongst others. Imagine the thousands in the drive sector being thrown out of work? We implore the governor to lift the curfew.”