2023 General Elections: Borno PDP Accuses APC of Plotting To Create Electoral Violence
By Madu Mohammed, Maiduguri
The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Borno State has accused the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC in the state of plotting to instigate electoral violence by sponsoring political thugs to disrupt the forthcoming general elections,.
The PDP in a three- page Press statement signed by the Legal Adviser, PDP Gubernatorial and Legislators Campaign Council, Barrister Kashim Mustapha Haruna, which was made available to journalists n Maiduguri on Sunday,said despite the peace accord earlier signed by all political parties in the state the APC is plotting to distract the forthcoming election in the state
It could be recalled the New Nigeria People’s Party, NNPP leadership in the state also accused the ruling APC of destroying it’s campaign billboards and posters that were erected or paste in strategic locations across the state.
“We wish to bring to the attention of the general public the unfortunate actions of thuggery and violence that is continuously being perpetrated by the APC against the legitimate and peaceful campaigns of the PDP in Borno State.
On Sunday, 12th February, 2023, the convoy of the PDP comprising the Gubernatorial and other candidates of the party was attacked by sponsored thugs of the APC in Gwange I, II & III wards of Maiduguri, injured many PDP supporters and vandalized an uncountable number of vehicles in the convoy, the statement said .
The PDP further said ” equally, on Tuesday, 14th February, 2023, the campaign rally of the party was disrupted and attacked by the same sponsored thugs of the APC in Bolori II ward of Maiduguri, as a result of which several party supporters sustained various degrees of injuries and more than 10 vehicles were vandalized by the APC thug, the general public may wish to recollect the Peace Accord signed by all political parties inclusive of the APC, under the auspices of the General Abdulsalam Abubakar Peace Committee, where all parties agreed to undertake their campaigns peacefully and not to attack the campaigns of other political parties. ”
The statement said despite the peace accord signed, the APC in Borno State has never respected the Accord, which is indicated by their actions as they attacked the convoy of the PDP Presidential Candidate, Atiku Abubakar GCON during his visit to Maiduguri on his Presidential Campaign , stressing that since then the APC in Borno has continued to attack PDP supporters and burnt offices and flags of the party across the state.
During the campaign tour of the APC Senatorial candidate for Borno Central Senatorial District, one Kaka Shehu Lawan, thugs in his convoy attacked and burnt PDP offices, flags and other assets in Bama and Ngala Local Governments. Eye witnesses have confirmed that the attacks were carried out jointly by members of the Civilian JTF in Kaka Shehu’s convoy in association with the APC thugs. We have reported these attacks to the security agencies in Borno State but no action has been taken yet.” Barrister Haruna lamented.
The PDP therefore, called on Governor Babagana Zulum who is the leader of the APC in the State to call his party thugs to order and to respect the directive of the IGP not to use the Civilian CTF in their political campaigns and in the elections proper and also called on the AIG Zone 15, in charge of Borno State and Yobe states, AIG,Yahaya Abubakar and the new Commissioner of Police posted to Borno State Haruna. Garba to investigate these crimes and prosecute all the culprits and ensure that the elections of 25th February and 11th March 2023 are free of violence and thuggery as we unfortunately witnessed during the campaign
In a swift reaction , the Borno APC Legal Adviser, Barrister Baba Shehu Zanna said, PDP in the state is doing everything possible to incite members of the general public, as it has became glaringly clear that all PDP candidates would not win any elective position in the forthcoming general elections slated to take place in all the 27 local government areas of the state.
Barrister Zanna said, ” it is unfortunate that the same PDP which sponsored some political thugs to destroy APC campaign structures, such as APC posters and billboards in Bama local government area last week, is concocting lies against the ruling party under the leadership of governor Babagana Zulum.”.
The allegations levelled against our Party by the opposition PDP Gubernatorial and Legislators Campaign Council is baseless, unfounded and far from the truth.. Mr. Haruna’s allegations is just a figment of his own imagination. This is not the first time the failing PDP has been making such allegations and writing frivolous petitions against our party but to no avail, because all their allegations and petitions were investigated by relevant security agencies, and were found to be false.”, he said.
He said ” the APC under the leadership of Governor Babagana Zulum has zero- tolerance for thuggery. The PDP is intimidated by the humongous crowd that came out to welcome our Presidential Candidate and his running mate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu and Senator Kashim Shettima last Saturday 18th, February, 2023 at the Elkanemi sport Centre and other locations in Maiduguri, which forced them to run mad.
“The APC in Borno therefore demand with immediate effect from the security agencies to arrest and investigate Mr. Haruna for volunteering with false information capable of leading to break down of law and order in the state The Civilian Joint Task Force has no hand in any thuggery whatsoever as alleged by Mr. Haruna and his PDP who have benefited from the fragile peace brought by the CJTF across nooks and crannies of Borno, Barrister Zanna added.