Jonathan, DSS warn against divisive, inciting comments
PDP alerts over alleged plot for one-party system
AHEAD of Saturday’s gubernatorial and state House of Assembly elections, President Goodluck Jonathan and the Department of State Security (DSS) have warned against unguided utterances , just as the PDP alleged plots by the incoming APC administration to foist a one party state on the nation.
In a statement by his spokesman, Reuben Abati in Abuja, President Jonathan condemned the very unseemly attempt by some politicians, groups and individuals to intimidate others, heat up the polity and cause public disorder and disaffection in the aftermath of the presidential and National Assembly elections.
According to the statement, President Jonathan is especially concerned about the negative triumphalism that has been put on display by certain elements since March 31, which flies in the face of his personal commitment to post-election peace, unity and national stability. The President’s statement further said: “The President calls on all those, who through their actions and utterances, have been promoting divisiveness, sectionalism and ethnic hatred in the country following the outcome of March 28 elections to cease and desist from actions that detract from the true spirit and culture of democracy envisioned by patriotic men and women of goodwill in Nigeria.
“President Jonathan also condemns the undue harassment of public officials serving under his administration and urges all affected persons to continue to perform their lawful duties without fear.
“The President cautions that this should be a time for the healing of political wounds in the overriding interest of national unity, stability and progress, not a time for ethnic jingoism and the settling of scores.
“The Federal Government will not condone any attempt to instigate a crisis in any part of the country in furtherance of personal political ambitions.
President Jonathan assures all Nigerians that his administration remains fully committed to national progress and the entrenchment of the best values of democracy for the good of all Nigerians.
He urged Nigerians to go out en-masse once again on April 11 to vote for candidates of their choice in the Governorship and State Assembly elections with the confidence that his administration will do all within its powers to ensure that they do so in peace, without threats, intimidation or violence from any quarters.
A statement yesterday by spokesperson of the DSS, Marilyn Ogar, said they want to “warn those stoking these embers of violence and disunity to desist, as this will not be tolerated.”
Ogar, who stated that the warning became necessary as it has come to the attention of the Service of some unguarded, inciting and divisive statements by some persons, said: “We should all strive to strengthen our nascent democracy as we work towards building a better Nigeria.”
While appreciating the Nigerian public for their peaceful conduct during the presidential election, the DSS spokesperson urged all to shun all forms of violence before, during and after the governorship and state Houses of Assembly elections.
The PDP , however, said that it would co-operate with the President-elect, Maj.-Gen. Muhammadu Buhari, to foster unity and development in the country.
Addressing journalists yesterday in Abuja at a press conference tagged “Nigeria on the brinks of dictatorship,” the PDP National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh, alleged that “our nation and its citizens are facing a serous threat. We are at the verge of a quick slide into dictatorship and the personal freedom we all enjoy today is about to be obliterated.”
Metuh said that APC had no clear agenda on how to govern the country, adding that “rather than concentrate on how to manage the mandate they now hold, they have resorted to seeking ways to stifle opposition and impose a one-party system and complete totalitarian rule in our country.”
According to him: “Reports reaching the PDP leadership from across the country show that the APC has been desperately seeking ways to destabilise our ranks and weaken our formations by approaching some senior members of our National Executive Committee (NEC) with phantom promises and threats ostensibly to use them to inject crisis in our fold and pave way for our elected members to cross over to APC.
“Furthermore, the PDP has it on good authority that part of this agenda of the APC is to intimidate and harass our members, especially officials who served under our administration.
“However, we wish to state in very unequivocal terms that the PDP leadership under the Chairmanship of Ahmadu Adamu Mu’azu will not condone any witch-hunt on any of our elected and appointed officers, including governors, ministers, legislators and others who served with clean records, as such will be met with stiff resistance within the ambits of the principles of democracy.
“We will do everything humanly possible within the rules to defend democratic principles and ethics, which we have successfully nourished in the past 16 years.
“A foretaste of the destabilising mission of the APC is clearly evident in the avoidable political tension being created in Ekiti and Lagos States where the APC is desperate to truncate the will of the people.”
Metuh further said: “We will not distract Buhari, we will help him to salvage democracy. We will offer APC alternative programmes. We will be the best opposition; we do hope that the opposition will appreciate democracy.
“PDP recognises that there were irregularities in the presidential election, but we decided that promoting unity is paramount to us. It is the wish of this party that the President-elect will not be disturbed, we will not do anything that will disturb him and we will not condole harassment of our members.”