Stakeholders in Kogi State, especially those from Kogi East, have condemned the alleged instigation of violence in the senatorial district by the Social Democratic Party, SDP, saying it is capable of disenfranchising voters in the zone and working against serious contenders from Kogi East.
The stakeholders who spoke on behalf of thousands of Igala sons and daughters across the zone, and Kogites generally, who are members of the Kogi East Patriotic Association, accused the opposition of needless and reckless propaganda, being stage-managed at the expense of security in the area.
They spoke at an emergency press briefing held in Abuja on Thursday, in reaction to what they termed the latest spurious allegation of attempted assassination by the SDP candidate and the involvement of a Police officer who was allegedly severely injured.
The stakeholders, who said they were not campaigning for any candidate in the forthcoming governorship election, noted that Kogi State indigenes and Nigerians were aware that other governorship candidates from opposition parties had been going about their campaigns without bloodshed or violence, but that the SDP and its candidate had, unfortunately, allegedly made orchestrated bloodshed the hallmark of their campaign.
“Each time SDP goes out, it is always blood, crying and tears for Kogites. Are they the only governorship contenders in Kogi State? Certainly not,” they declared.
The Convener, Kogi East Patriotic Association, Abdulkadir Ojonugwa, who addressed the press on behalf of others, said, “The SDP handlers are also as clueless and have failed to realise that while elections would go on smoothly in other parts of the state and others would record more wins, their game plan would only decimate the votes in Kogi East at the detriment of serious contenders. And we say no to this. Enough is enough.”
They accused him of creating tension in the region even after he had refused to honour Police invitations and threatened to effect a citizens’ arrest “and hand him over to the Police” if the horrible trend continues.
“Our people are getting fed up with all these violent shenanigans and if the Police and the state government refuse to do the needful, the people of Kogi East will have no choice than to effect a citizens’ arrest of Ajaka and hand him over to the relevant authorities,” Ojonugwa, who is from Olamaboro Local Government Area of Kogi East, said.
On the Police officer in the purported video of assault, the stakeholders noted, “The Police officer seen in that video would have been made to say things under duress to save his own life because that was the only way that man could still be alive today.
“We could hear clearly as the thugs were shouting to be allowed to kill a police officer of the Federal Republic of Nigeria inside a Police Station and turning around to blame all that on the state government.”
The Kogi East stakeholders stated, “As bona-fide citizens of Kogi State from Kogi East, it is our desire to see a peaceful and credible election in our dear state.