…Says Governor training 3,000 militia to disrupt polls
OBIORA IFOH, Abuja
The Kogi State Chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has raised alarm over increased attack on members of opposition parties by thugs suspected to be sponsored by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to attack opposition parties.
They urged Security Agencies and Kogi State Police command to take urgent actions to avert the looming political upheaval and widespread destruction of lives and property in the State, bound Kogi State Chapter of APC to be of civilized and peaceful during the rest of the campaigns and the forthcoming elections.
They equally called for thorough investigation into APC’s intolerance, intimidation, harassment, disruption of peaceful gathering, destruction of campaign materials and personal properties of opposition candidates.
The also called for thorough investigation into allegations of arms stockpile and the training of armed bearing militia in the State in the guise of vigilantes, dismantle all training camps and confiscate illegal arms in their custody, investigate the activities of Local Government Administrators who are alleged to be the custodians of sophisticated arms and ammunitions.
Addressing a Press Conference on Thursday in Abuja, Kogi State PDP Chairman, Prince Sam Uhuoto recounted how APC have been attacking the PDP members, meetings, campaign tour and properties belonging to PDP members. They noted that several PDP members have been killed while many sustained several degrees of injuries.
According to the group, several petitions have been written to Kogi State Police Commissioner as well as the Inspector General of Police but regretted that the police have not been able to take action. They further stated that several arrests have been made but reported that the suspects have been released and none has been arraigned before the court for prosecution.
They said, “the spate of violence includes destruction of campaign materials of opposition party candidates like posters, banners and bill boards all over the State. These incidents of violence and thuggery have become more brazen, dangerous and rampant in all the three Senatorial districts of the State in the last few weeks.
“The foregoing is a recipe for chaos and a flagrant attempt to circumscribe our right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association as well as our right to take part in the government of our country.”
“What started like rumours of a grand design to exclude all other political Parties from the political space by making it impossible even to campaign is now assuming a frightening reality as can be seen from the following well documented acts of violence and thuggery”
They pointed out specific incidences like March 6, 2018 and July 31, 2018 at Senator Ahmed Ogembe’s empowerment programmes where armed APC thugs beat up beneficiaries, and on December 2, 2018 where Party leaders were attacked at Dabras Hotel, Okene.
According to the group, “It is also public knowledge that some of the guns used in the attack and the house to house harassment of supporters of the candidate of another party were warehoused in the residence of Kogi State Commissioner of Water Resources, Ahmed Ozigi.
“In the most recent development in the Central Senatorial District, one Ojo Enesi was brutally murdered with AK47 rifle by APC thugs, Abdullahi Suleiman (alias Director) and Ismail Kashim (alias Kamuche). Following their arrest by the police they volunteered confessional statements that they were APC thugs assigned by the Governor, Alhaji Yahaya Bello through the Okehi Local Government Sole Administrator, Abdulrahee Ohiare.”
They recalled an earlier alert on importation of arms, ammunitions, uniforms and other military equipment by the Kogi State Government, discovered by the Nigeria Customs Service saying the uniforms are in use by fake security agencies and 3,000 militia men being trained by the State Government.
Present at the event were former Kogi State governors, Ibrahim Idris and Cap. Idris Wada, former Acting Governor and DG Campaign Council, Hon. Clarence Olorunfemi.
Also Present were Senator Dino Melaye, Attai Aidoko, Hon. Tijjani Yusuf, Hon. Jiyani Ajalana, Former Deputy Gov. Sir. Yomi Awoniyi, and many others.