By Dayo Johnson, Akure
The two major political parties in the Ondo governorship election, the All Progressive Congress, APC, and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, have raised the alarm over the importation of political thugs into the state ahead of Saturdays poll
A statement by the Eyitayo Jegede campaign organisation signed by Zadok Akintoye alleged that thugs from Kogi state have been imported and lodged in hotels in Akure.
Akintoye said that ” the attention of the Department of State Security and the Nigerian Army is drawn to the presence of heavily armed men at Sharon Hotel, Ijapo Akure under the supervision of the Executive Governor of Kogi State, H.E Yahaya Bello and the Minister of State for Niger Delta Affairs Sen. Tayo Alasoadura.
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“We remind the APC led Akeredolu Government of the commitment of all political parties to the peaceful conduct of this election as witnessed to by the signing of the Peace Accord yesterday 6th October 2020 at the International Conference and Event Center.
“We called the attention of the President General Muhammadu Buhari to immediately call the Governor and his minister to order to avert major violent confrontation and crisis in this election.
“We also use this opportunity to inform the International Community to hold the APC government accountable for any breach of the peace as we will firmly resist the planned violent intervention of Mr. Yaya Bello and his fellow anti-democratic forces in this election.
” We remain committed to the commitment made by our candidate and party to peaceful elections.
Also, the All Progressive Congress Publicity Secretary, Alex Kalejaye alleged that the thugs imported into the state Oyo state governor, Seyi Makinde went wild by attacking APC members
Kalejaye said in a statement that ” barely 24 hours after a Peace accord was signed in Akure, the Ondo State capital, ahead of Saturday’s election, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) broke loose on Wednesday and launched a fresh attack on members of the All Progressives Congress, APC.
“The thugs were on the entourage of the youthful Oyo State Governor, Mr. Seyi Makinde, who came into the state with several trucks loaded with fierce-looking young men from Ibadan.
“The APC members attacked, mainly from Ilaje and Ondo West Local Government areas, were on their way to Akure, to attend the party’s grand finale.
The incident happened around the Owena market, in Ondo East Local Government, along Ondo-Akure Road.
“At least seven members of APC have been hospitalised. The situation would have been worse, but for the quick intervention of a chieftain of APC from the Ondo Kingdom, Chief Olabisi Johnson, and the Ondo East council boss, Hon. Wale Akinkuotu.
” The APC is distressed that Mr. Makinde has no regard for the peace accord that has just been signed by all the parties candidates, to ensure rancour-free and peaceful conduct of the gubernatorial election.
“We urge President Muhammadu Buhari to call Mr. Makinde to order. We are not unaware of his unparalleled penchant for violence and thuggery. However, Political rascality and disregard for decency are not party to us in Ondo State.
Kalejaye said “We appeal to our members to put the interest of the State ahead, and promote every effort to ensure a smooth process. Our desire is to encourage the electorate to be fully involved in the election on Saturday.