PDP flays deployment of security agents for elections
Police vow to fish out masterminds of Rivers by-election violence
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday condemned what it called “the unrelenting use of security forces, including special police and military units by the All Progressives Congress (APC), to subjugate Nigerians and provide cover for their thugs to unleash violence, disrupt polling processes and foist fake results at elections.”
In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party said “such brazen assault on the will of the people, particularly as witnessed in last Saturday’s Rivers State Assembly by-election, is completely provocative, incendiary and has an unlimited capacity to elicit violent resistance from the people and derail our hard-earned democracy, especially as we approach the 2019 general elections.”
The PDP alleged: “The use of security agencies by the APC to aid the subjugation of the people has become a regular practice as amply witnessed in the July 14, 2018 Ekiti governorship election, the 2016 Edo State governorship election, the by-elections in Kogi, Bauchi, Katsina and Cross River and most recently, the River State Assembly by-election, where special police units were used to manhandle voters, while providing cover for APC thugs to attack voters, snatch ballot boxes and disrupt the election.”
The party further claimed that “the APC, in its desperation, is resorting to this underhand means, because it knows that there is no way it can win in any peaceful and transparently conducted election in any part of the country, due to the public indignation against its dismal performance in the last three years.”
In a related development, the Rivers Police Command said it was working with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and stakeholders to fish out perpetrators of the violence that marred last weekend’s by-election in the state.
The Commissioner of Police, Zaki Ahmed, told journalists yesterday in Port Harcourt that efforts were on to arrest all persons fingered to have played negative roles that led to the suspension of the polls.He vowed that the command would diligently prosecute all culprits no matter how highly placed.The police boss reiterated that the force did not collude with any political party to discredit the political process as alleged in some quarters.