Saturday, January 24, 2015 9:32 pm
*The Nigerian opposition party says attacks part of plot to shift February polls
The All Progressives Congress (APC) has pointedly accused the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) of sponsoring the attacks on President Goodluck Jonathan in Katsina and Bauchi as part of its devilish plan to demonize the opposition and force a postponement of next month’s general elections.
In a statement issued in Lagos on Saturday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party said the coordinated hysterical reactions to the attacks by the presidency, Senate President David Mark and the leadership of the Ijaw nation have exposed the sponsors of the attacks.
It said those who have gone into a frenzy in condemning the attacks should direct their anger at the PDP, which hired the hoodlums who attacked the President in Katsina and Bauchi and gave them brooms to make them look like APC supporters.
”Information is now in the public domain that these attacks were self inflicted, with the aim of demonizing the APC and instigating retaliatory attacks in the southern states, thus precipitating chaos which the PDP and the Presidency will then use as an excuse for the postponement of the elections
”Apparently they did not envisage that the information about their complicity over the attacks will leak to the public. It is common knowledge that the security around the President is such that no hoodlum can come close enough to pelt him with stones,” APC said.
The party said the Presidency distorted facts when it accused the APC of breaching the Abuja peace accord that was signed by the presidential candidates of the various political parties, saying the PDP and its band of thugs did not allow the ink with which the agreement was signed to dry before they started breaching it.
”The second attack on our offices in Rivers took place after the pact was signed, just like the serial attacks on our supporters in Sokoto, organized by a PDP stalwart in the city and aided and abetted by the police. The death-wish-for-Buhari advert by the incautious Gov. Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State in the name of President Jonathan, which could have triggered unimaginable violence if not properly managed by the APC, also breached the agreement.
”Where was the Special Adviser to the President on Political Affairs, Prof. Rufai Ahmed Alkali, when all these breaches were taking place? Not once did he issue a statement to say ‘this nonsense must stop’.
”Where was the Senate President, David Mark, when these breaches were taking place? He was never on record as condemning the attacks on the APC offices and its supporters or the irresponsible and downright repugnant advert by Gov. Fayose. Are those in the opposition not Nigerians who also deserve the care and attention of the nation’s number three citizen?’
”Mr Senate President, sir, if any party is guilty of ‘despicable desperation’ as you claimed, it is your party, the PDP. Which party has been using all the cheap tricks in the books to postpone the elections at all cost? Which party has been sponsoring attacks against itself to demonize the opposition and force a postponement of next
month’s election? Which party has deviated from issues and become fixated on the person of the APC Presidential Candidate, savaging and lying against him at every point? Mr. Senate President, remember the saying that he who must come to equity must come with clean hands,” it said
APC also slammed the self-serving, self-styled leadership of the Ijaw nation for vowing retaliation over the sponsored attacks on the President in the north, and threatening the very existence of Nigeria if President Jonathan is not elected into a second term, wondering where in the world threats have ever won an election.
”The last time we checked, elections are won and lost by the votes of the people, not by infantile threats. The last time we checked, no one is guiltier over attempts to undermine the oneness of Nigeria than than some self-styled leaders of the Ijaw nation. Had they been duly prosecuted and punished in accordance with the laws of the land, they would not have dared to continue threatening the nation’s existence,
even as those saddled with the responsibility of preventing such threats look on,” the party said.
APC appealed to its members and supporters nationwide to continue to maintain peace in the face of the most egregious of provocations, in order not to play into the hands of the PDP and the Jonathan Administration who are incredibly terrified of the forthcoming elections and will do anything to make sure it did not hold..
”As we were writing this statement,. news filtered in that the venue of our rally in Okrika in Rivers State was attacked with an explosive device in the early hours of Saturday, even though no one disrupted the First Lady’s campaign there earlier in the week. Also, soldiers have taken over the state-government owned stadium in Port Harcourt after beating and expelling the workers there, in a disgraceful show of force by an increasingly desperate and despotic federal government. Yet, there has been no word from the Presidency, the Senate President and the leadership of the Ijaw nation.
”Now that the antics of the PDP have been exposed for the world to see, we are once again calling on Nigerians and the international community to prevail on President Jonathan and his party to desist from its plot, using the excuse of violence and PVCs, to shift next month’s polls. If President Jonathan is sure he has utilized the
mandate given to him by Nigerians in 2011 to their satisfaction, he should be eager to know the verdict of the citizens come 14 February 2015,” APC said.