By Demola Akinyemi – Lagos
The Kwara State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq-led administration of using instruments of the state to intimidate political opponents and settle political scores.
In a statement on Monday by its State Chairman, Hon (Engr) Kola Shittu, the PDP alleged that the All Progressives Congress-led State government is using the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to witch-hunt its members and coerce them into joining the APC.
The statement reads, “A few days ago, on the directive of the Governor Abdulrazaq, vice-chairmen and councillors of local government councils in the State were invited to the Government House, where they were addressed by a former Kwara South senator and chieftain of the APC in the State.
“At the meeting, the vice-chairmen and councillors were told to denounce the PDP and join the APC or else, EFCC will come after them.
“We will, therefore, not be surprised if, in the coming days, the anti-graft agency drags the council vice-chairmen and the councillors on cooked allegations of corruption. One is left to wonder if the Commission has now become an arm of Kwara APC.
“This is the same way Governor Abdulrazaq has been using the State Assembly to perpetuate his vendetta mission against political opponents in the State.
“Let it be noted that our party is not opposed to the war against corruption, we, however, reject the use of the EFCC and other state apparatus as political tools to intimidate, harass and persecute opposition members.
“We urge the council vice-chairmen, councillors and our members across the state to remain resolute and not to succumb to the intimidation of anti-democratic forces.
“The council chairmen, their deputies and the councillors were duly elected by the people, and no one has the power to unlawfully usurp their positions.
“As we have always done, we once again advise Governor Abdulrazaq to focus more on governance for which he was elected for and stop this politics of bitterness and vindictiveness. We wish he had spent as much time trying to govern effectively as he had spent pursuing a vendetta mission.
“On the recovered loots returned to the State government by the EFCC, we challenge the Commission and the government to release names of officials whom the loots were recovered from.
“We reject the unsuccessful attempt to drag the PDP into this matter, which we view as a case of ‘giving a dog a bad name and hang it’.
“We understand that the monies were recovered from civil servants who have no dealings with the PDP. There is, therefore, no basis to drag our party into this.”