Ten years after his father was assassinated, Mr. Sonny Harry, the first son of the late frontline politician, Dr. Marshall Harry, a chieftain of the All Nigeria People’s Party, ANPP, yesterday recalled how his father left the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and was later murdered on March 5, 2003, in his Abuja residence.
He also called on well-meaning Nigerians to intervene in the current crisis rocking the Rivers State chapter of the PDP. He compared the suspension of Governor Rotimi Amechi from the PDP to the circumstance that led to his father’s alleged politically-motivated assassination, adding that the crisis might worsen if nothing was done to stop it.
Narrating how his father was suspended from the PDP, joined the ANPP, where he later became the Deputy National Chairman (South-South) of the party, Harry lamented that the late politician complained to the police several times about the threat to his life, but was ignored until he was assassinated.
“It is very important to note that before my father, Dr. Marshall Harry, passed on, a similar scenario played out. My father complained at the top of his voice, countless times to the police and all stakeholders in the society, especially the PDP, about threats to his life.
“He was on countless times ignored by the po-lice, instead he was locked up at SIB, taken to court the next day and was remanded in Port Harcourt prison.
He was also suspended from the PDP and irked by the situation; he went to court to challenge his suspension. “He (Marshall Harry) subsequently left the PDP and pitched tent with the ANPP and became the South-South National Vice Chairman. He was eventually assassinated and the memories still linger till today.”
Harry (Jnr), who was a deputy governorship candidate of the ANPP in 2007, also urged the state PDP to resolve its crisis before it snowballed into a major crisis. Harry expressed worry over the disagreement between President Goodluck Jonathan and Governor Rotimi Amaechi of Rivers State.
He said: “The situation (PDP crisis) is indeed very worrisome because the personalities involved are sons of the Niger Delta and the crisis indeed is uncalled for and should be resolved amicably before it gets out of hand.
“In this regard, I urge well-meaning citizens of the Niger Delta and indeed notable Nigerians to rise up and resolve whatever misunderstanding that exists between Mr. President and Governor Amaechi. “My advice to elders of the state and indeed notable Nigerians is to intervene urgently to avoid a repeat of what happened to my father.”
He, was however, happy that his father’s pet project ‘Campaign for the Realisation of South-South President, CRESSOP 2003, had become a reality through the emergence of Jonathan as President.
Harry said the campaign was a marked departure from the unrealistic clamour for resource control, lamenting that nobody given recognition to his (Marshall Harry) family for being the first to champion the course of a Nigerian president from the South-South.
He expressed gratitude to the former Head of State and ANPP presidential candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari, for standing by the family 10 years after the death of his father and also thanked Amaechi for his support to every member of the family, particularly in the last couple of years.