The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Presidential Campaign Organization (PPCO) has accused the All Progressives Congress (APC) of instigating violence and mayhem in an attempt to get elections postponed in some strategic states of the federation.
PPCO Director Media and Publicity, and National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan while briefing journalist at the weekend in Abuja made reference to the activities of APC’s governorship candidate in Taraba state, Sani Abubakar Danladi, that he has allegedly “resorted to violence having realized that there is absolutely no hope for him and his party in the March 2, 2019 governorship election.
Ologbondiyan explained that, “It is an incontrovertible fact, known to all, that Taraba state is a long established stronghold of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and that Governor Darius Ishaku has the undiluted backing of overwhelming majority of the electorate across the state, due to his sterling performance in office.
“Being exasperated and frustrated by the popularity of the PDP and Gov. Ishaku, the APC, which is stuck with the most unpopular candidate in the election, is bent at triggering confusion and bloodletting so as to ambush and truncate the electoral process in the state, not minding the human and material damage such portends, he added.
Ologbondiyan revealed that, ” PDP has full information of how the APC is working with enemies of Taraba state to inject confusion and escalate insecurity in the state so that the governorship election will be deferred to enable the federal authorities and security agencies have the opportunity to perpetrate the type of massive rigging that took place in Ekiti and Osun states governorship elections in 2018 and award victory to the APC.
According to him, “the APC Governorship candidate, who is also personally well reputed for acts that contravene free and fair elections, has been boasting that he has the backing of the Federal Government and some godfathers in Abuja, who have no stake in the peace, unity and development of Taraba state in this ignoble project.
He also explained that, ” on Thursday January 17, 2019, the APC, hiding under the guise of campaign unleashed mayhem on Wukari, a major town in Taraba state. Right from Gindin Dorowa, about 40 kilometers to Wukari City, thugs recruited by the APC governorship candidate, went on shooting spree, destroying PDP billboards all the way to Wukari.
“From the Wukari Yam market, APC thugs continued shooting their way into the town as if they were on a mission to conquer the town, while destroying PDP campaign materials including billboards, posters, he added.
He alleged that, ” the shooting and unbridling of mayhem continued until they arrived to the city center and close to the Aku Uka Palace where another political party was also holding a rally, just as they did in Karim on December 26, 2018 during which they prevented the PDP senatorial and House of Representatives candidates from campaigning.
According to Ologbondiyan, “pandemonium broke out when, in the course of the shooting in Wukari, a member of the PDP was killed. At this point a crowd in sympathy to the victim rushed to the scene; panic took over, a vehicle carrying some APC thugs tried to beat a retreat and in the process crashed into another vehicle and caught fire. Other vehicles, which wanted to rush out of the scene got trapped and were torched from the fire spreading from the already burning vehicle.
He however claimed that, ” this is the reason APC governorship candidate in Taraba state, Sani Danladi has not signed the peace accord, which was initiated by the Taraba state police command and the INEC to ensure peaceful campaigns and election.
He stressed that, “Taraba state as a stronghold of the PDP will never, in any way whatsoever, succumb to the machination of the APC as the people are ready and fully alert to confront and resist the APC and its candidate, with all the means and energy necessary and available in the defence of their mandate which they have freely given to the PDP.
Ologbondiyan also insisted that “the governorship election in Taraba and indeed all states of the Federation scheduled for March 2, 2019 will hold on the fixed date. In the same vein, the PDP and the people of Taraba state will never accept any result that does not reflect the reality already expressed by the people.
The PPCO Director Media And Publicity, urged the National Peace Committee “to note the infractions by the APC in Taraba state and speak out in the interest of peace, particularly given the security situation in the North East, especially now that Nigerians know who to hold responsible, should there be a break down of law and order in the state.