PDP alleges harassment of members by Oshiomhole
Ahead of the September 10 governorship polls, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has alleged that Governor Adams Oshiomhole is using the police to harass, intimidate, unlawfully arrest and torture its members.
In a statement by the state’s Publicity Secretary, Chris Osa Nehekhare, the party said the plot by the All Progressives Congress (APC) was to keep the PDP members out of circulation till after the election.
It alleged that its party members in the three senatorial districts now live a daily life of fear, adding that parents of PDP youth members are now being arrested in place of their children and made to pay huge sums of money before they are granted bail.
The statement read: “A couple of weeks ago, our governorship running mate, John Yakubu addressed a small rally of over 250 youths, women and men on Akenzua road in Benin City, at about 5:30p.m. Soon after he left the venue with his convoy, Oshiomhole ordered men of the Nigeria Police to arrest the youths claiming they were cultists who just had an outdoor meeting.
“Also, few days ago, some APC thugs, driving a branded APC van drove into a PDP ward meeting in Fugar, Estako Central Local Council area and attacked them, injuring two people who are currently receiving treatment in hospital. Yet, the police arrested our boys when they went to lodge a complaint even though they had information about where the culprits were hiding.”
The PDP recalled another case of intimidation as the attempted murder charge slammed on its members in Estako East Local Council area,The statement added that a month ago, the party’s chairman in Etsako East, Abdul Ganiyu was arrested and tortured by APC supporters at a police station under the under the guise of settling a rift between two parties.
The statement added: “On August 6, we received a warning from two reliable top government sources, that the state government has perfected a plan to arrest top PDP chieftains on the eve of the elections. The sources disclosed that the list of those to be arrested were compiled and approved by the governor and his aides.”
According to Nehekhare, while the PDP eschews violent reactions, “we make bold to say that we can neither be cowed nor forced to abandon the trust the people reposed in us to defend the vote they will cast on September 10. Our decision to chart the path of peace should not be taken as a sign of weakness.”The party urged the police to desist from further intimidation and detention of its members.