2019: PDP, APC bicker over alleged violence

Written by on September 17, 2018

…13 guber aspirants jostle for APC ticket

By Ahmed ‘Lateef, Madiu Yusuf, Abdulrasaq Alawaye, Yusuf Kehinde and Onyemachi Emmanuel

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Kwara State yesterday traded words over allegation that the latter was hatching a large scale violence in the state preparatory to the 2019 general elections.
While the PDP alleged that part of the plot to unleash the mayhem was the recent attack on some residents of Ilorin by thugs belonging to a governorship aspirant of the APC, the opposition party described the allegation as not only baseless but unfounded.
The state APC reacted swiftly through its Chairman, Media and Publicity Committee, Mr Kayode Oyin-Zubair, in a telephone interview.
The PDP, in a statement issued by its Publicity Secretary, Mr. Tunde Ashaolu blamed the violence characterising activities of the state APC on the exorbitant prices of the nominations of the party, prompting aspirants on the platform of the APC to resort to whatever it takes to clinch the party’s tickets.
The PDP urged the security agencies and members of the public to take stock of the violent attacks perpetrated by the APC in the State.
“The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State wishes to call the attention of security agencies and the general public to the violent tendencies of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) in the State.
“On Saturday, 15 September, we got a report that some rampaging thugs loyal to two different camps in the APC engaged in a fight at one of their campaign offices along Sango road, Ilorin, which resulted in injuries to scores of people including party members and other innocent people.
“This is coming barely two days after some political thugs belonging to an APC governorship aspirant unleashed mayhem on some residents and shop owners along major streets of Ilorin including Ibrahim Taiwo road, Sawmill area, Abdulazeez Attah road, Agaka area and Oja-Oba.
“Shop owners, residents and passers-by had to scamper for safety as the thugs in their large numbers brandished dangerous weapons, which scared people away.
The party warned that the people of the state would turn down those it called “seasonal politicians” who seldom visit their home state during the electioneering period.
But the APC said it does not need to unleash terror on the people that it enjoys their support.
“The allegation is not only baseless but unfounded. As a responsible and progressive political party that enjoys the support of the people, we don’t know why anybody would think that we would want to unleash terror on the people that have respect for us. Today in Kwara, we are the only party that enjoys the overwhelming support of Kwarans and that has shown in our ongoing membership registration.
“If you go through all wards and polling units in Kwara, it is as if INEC is conducting an exercise the way people are coming out. That is a strength to us. And why would we want to disturb the peace of the people when they are actually with us?
“It would interest you to also know that in the coming weeks, as a party that has very high respect for the people, our aspirants would engage the people via large media coverage on what they have individually. Because we want the people to hold us to our words and to assess us about our promises”, Oyin-Zubair said.

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