Governor Rotimi Akeredolu
…Maintain sanctity of your campaigns – police commissioner
By Dayo Johnson
CANDIDATE of the All Progressives Congress, APC and governor of Ondo State, Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu, has asked the state police command to investigate, arrest and prosecute the political thugs that attacked his convoy and that of the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP Eyitayo Jegede in Oba Akoko area of the state, on Wednesday.
Expressing regret over the political violence that ruptured the existing peace in the state, Akeredolu said the lives of the people of the state are more important than his election.
Recall that his convoy and that of his rival, the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, Eyitayo Jegede were attacked by political thugs who destroyed campaign vehicles and injured scores of party supporters.
Sophisticated weapons were freely used by the political thugs who fired gunshots at one another.
Jegede alleged that the gun attack at his vehicle was a clear attempt to assassinate him.
Akeredolu in a statement by his campaign organisation in Akure expressed regret “over the incident that occurred in Oba-Akoko, Akoko South-West Local Government Area of the state on Wednesday, 16th September,2020 where supporters of the Peoples Democratic Party and All Progressives Congress were involved in violence resulting into burning and damage of campaign vehicles of both parties.’’
The statement issued by spokesperson of the organisation Olabode Richard Olatunde described the violence as mostly unfortunate, considering the prevailing peace that his administration has maintained in the state.
Akeredolu recalled that “on his way to Ikare-Akoko in continuation of his campaign, he saw some members of the PDP by the road side who waved at him and he waved back as their governor, wondering what could have led to the violence which was brought to his notice while leaving the palace of Owa Ale of Ikare.
He called “on the PDP and its candidate, Eyitayo Jegede SAN to rein in their supporters, as he would do to those of the APC, restating that his campaign organization believes in peace and will not negotiate that on the altar of politics or political aspiration.
He therefore urged “the police to ensure that the campaign itinerary of the various political parties are properly aligned henceforth, ensure that different political parties are not on the same corridor at the same time, so as not to give room for any future clash, which mostly occur without the knowledge of the candidates and leaders of the parties.
The governor also tasked the police to investigate the incident and prosecute any culprit arrested, to serve as deterrent to those who may want to cause trouble before, during and after the governorship election.
Maintain sanity in your campaigns—Police commissioner
Meanwhile, the state Commissioner of Police, Salami Bolaji, has warned the various political parties to maintain decorum in their political campaigns according to the dictates of the electoral law
Salami gave the warning following the fracas that occurred between two Political Parties in Oba-Akoko on Wednesday.
He said it was to avoid this kind of situation that he drew out a timetable for all political parties in the state to ensure that no two political parties have same day same venue for their campaigns. And wondered why they still crossed each other’s part during the campaigns.
Salami pointed out that he will not be the kind of Commissioner of Police to watch people turning campaigns into war fronts and folds his arms.
He promises to unleash the arm of the laws on any person or party turning campaigns into war, saying, nobody is above the law of the land.
The commissioner who said though the situation in Oba-Akoko has been put under control warned those with similar views about political campaigns anywhere in the state to have a rethink or risk arrest and possible prosecution.
Group condemns attack asks intl community to note perpetrators of violence
A group, Civil Society Watch, CSW, condemned the violence unleashed on Eyitayo Jegede and called on the Federal Government to investigate the incident and query the security apparatus attached to Governor Akeredolu.
Its national coordinator, Dare Akndolie asked the National Security Adviser (NSA), Mr. Babagana Monguno, the Inspector General of Police (IGP) and the Department of State Security (DSS) to query the security operatives in Ondo State for allowing Governor Akeredolu to campaign in Ondo North Senatorial District on Wednesday, in violation of the security arrangements put in place by the security agencies.