APC spent N5b to arrange Buhari’s Chatham House show, says PDP
• ‘Ex-ruler may face ICC after polls’ • Fani-Kayode alleges threat to life
THE Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) hinted yesterday that the All Progressives Congress (APC) Presidential candidate, Gen. Muhammadu Buhari might face charges of human rights abuses at the International Criminal Court (ICC) shortly after the 2015 general elections.
The ruling party also alleged yesterday that the APC spent not less than N5 billion to package the appearance of Buhari at the Chatham House programme.
Director of the PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, Femi Fani-Kayode, at a press conference in Abuja yesterday, also stated that his life has come under serious threats since last Friday when he alleged that Senator Bola Tinubu had a plan with the APC vice presidential candidate, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, to eventually become President should the APC win the March 28 presidential election.
Fani-Kayode was full of praises for The Guardian for the quick correction it published after publishing a picture that created an impression that the interview was conducted in London.
He said: “The APC propaganda machinery facilitated the publication of a picture of the interview, which they claimed took place in London, on the front pages of some newspapers. Indeed, despite desperate attempts by the APC propaganda machinery to coerce newspapers from retracting the fraudulent picture of Gen. Buhari’s purported London interview, The Guardian, one of the most respected newspapers on the African continent, which had printed the picture on its front page edition of Sunday, 22nd February, 2015, was quick to publish a retraction on page 2 of the newspaper’s Monday, 23rd February, 2015 edition.
“We commend the courage, the honesty, the professionalism and the decency of The Guardian newspaper in this matter and we urge all the newspapers that made the same mistake not to allow themselves to be intimidated by the APC media machine and also find the courage to publish a retraction and expose the APC lie.”
The PDP drew attention to petitions already sent to the ICC about the alleged involvement of Buhari in the 2011 post-election violence.
Fani-Kayode said: “General Buhari may have to prepare to face charges of human rights abuses and criminality filed against him before the International Criminal Court on account of the 2011 electoral violence in Nigeria.
“According to the African Herald Express report on the issue published on February 20, 2015, Dutch lawyers– Prakken d’Oliveira, a human rights law firm based in Amsterdam, said it had filed a criminal complaint against Buhari at the ICC. Prakken d’ Oliveira, led by Prof. Sluiter, lawyer and partner, is said to be acting on behalf of the Nigerian Northern Coalition for Democracy and Justice and two individual victims.”
On the alleged spending of N5 billion to facilitate the appearance of Buhari at the Chatham House, Fani-Kayode said: “There are some interesting facts about the Chatham House outing that Nigerians should know. The event was organised only two days before it took place and well after Buhari had arrived in London. The questions that were asked were given to him two days before the event and the answers were prepared for him and given to him to rehearse. The programme lasted for only 55 minutes and only five questions, which were all planted, were asked.
“The people in the Hall were sponsored. About 1,500 persons applied to attend the function but only 200 were allowed in. The audience was carefully selected. The APC mobilised many students from the Republic of Ireland, who were all on scholarship, courtesy of the Rivers State Government, to embark on a pro-Buhari rally outside the Chatham House. The students were threatened that their scholarships would be withdrawn if they refused to participate in the rally. The APC leaders begged for the speaking engagement and we are reliably informed that they paid for it.
“The information at our disposal indicate that no less than N5 billion was budgeted for the London jamboree. This amount was wasted on General Buhari’s Chatham House speaking engagement, numerous foreign consultants, air tickets for the huge delegation, the contingent of governors, hotels bills, the purchase and renting of vehicles and other logistics. We challenge the APC and its leaders to contradict this information.”
Alleging that he received some phone calls threatening his life over the alleged deal between Tinubu and Osinbajo to outsmart Buhari should the APC win the presidential election, Fani-Kayode said: “The other day I got a text from an aide to Tinubu, another known minion of Tinubu. He is on my phone now, saying ‘Stop this attack on Bola Tinubu because we are going to deal with you.’
“My name is Femi Fani-Kayode, and nobody can kill me before my time. Nobody can cut me short and I habour no fear of violence and I do not take threats lightly. Neither do I fear for my life.
“I have never shed blood and I do not believe in violence, the angel of the Lord will strike that person dead before they point a gun at me in Jesus name. Let us take the violence and the treats out of it. This is a political arena “
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