Political thugs suspected to be from the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, have unleashed terror on members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, staging a rally in Alimosho area of the state.
In the last four days, the attacks have spread from Agege, where an APC supporter was gunned down by suspected thugs of a PDP candidate in the area, to other parts of the state.
Agbado Oke Odo Local Council Development Area, LCDAs was the scene of another bloody violence allegedly orchestrated by supporters of the PDP.
Similar attacks occurred three years ago after the then ACN (now APC) won the council election in the area.
“A number of our members, Tunde Solaja, Nurudeen Olukowi, A. Tobi and Jenrola are lying critically ill in hospitals awaiting surgery to extract pellets and bullets shot at them by some agents of darkness adorned in the garb of political opponents. What were their offences?
“Their only crime, to the ever desperate and intolerant leadership and membership of the Peoples Democratic Party was their effrontery to express their rights to freely associate; to associate and identify with the ideals of a greater Nigeria as manifested in the programmes and policies of the APC in our bid to salvage our nation,” said Aderemi Adeyemo, Chairman, Publicity Committee, APC, Agbado Oke-Odo LCDA.
At a news conference in Ogba, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria, Adeyemo called the attention of Nigeria’s security agencies and the entire peace loving members of the global community to “a series of calculated peace breaches that were being perpetrated in our communities by terror gangs of the PDP to harass and intimidate members of the APC as well as other innocent citizens in the course of their daily lives.
“These untoward incidents began just about a week ago in various forms like defacing and tearing of campaign posters, destruction and vandalization of banners and billboards of candidates of the APC and other skirmishes. It assumed a more dangerous dimension on the morning of Thursday, 22 January, 2015 when we were about to flag off the LCDA campaigns at our party headquarters located along Ekoro Road in Abule Egba Area of Lagos State.
“As law abiding citizens, on the day preceding the event, we had put the various police formations in our locality on notice that we shall be holding a walk-through in the council area to commence our campaigns and we were assured of adequate protection.
“Unknown to us however, an armed gang had laid ambush at Old Ota/Ekoro Road Junction and began to molest and harass our members, men and women on their way to the APC party secretariat. In the process, eight of our members were physically assaulted, two of whom were hospitalized immediately to prevent mortality resulting from profuse bleeding due to multiple machete cuts.”
According to him, the Divisional Police Officer of Oke-Odo Police Station responded swiftly by leading his team to the scene of the infraction, but that they could not do much to restrain the terror gang who had by then mobilized more of their members and were brazenly brandishing a calibre of weaponry that could hardly be matched by the police.
He said to avoid what could have degenerated into a war, the APC members quietly evacuated from the scene and went in a different direction to conduct their road tour programme in other parts of the council.
“Strangely on our return later same day, we discovered that the homes of three of our members, Mrs Kenny Ogunsanya, Mrs. Abudu and Mr. Adewuyi popularly known as Sanka had been vandalized by the same band of political thugs.
“In like manner, two of our supporters returning from our event were stalked to a bar in the Oki area of Iyana Ipaja. The two of them were shot in the leg at close range along with two others, a woman and a young girl who were hit by stray bullets. But for the timely intervention of residents of the community who rushed the victims to the hospital, the story would have been a lot worse.
“It is interesting that in a sharp contrast, the same PDP peopled by these characters who could not tolerate us propagating our own party went round town unhindered the following day, Friday, 23 January, 2015. Characteristically, they bullied everyone on their path, attacked all of our members they encountered and wreaked havoc on the Local Government Head Office at Oja Oba, along Lagos Abeokuta Expressway and our party office on Ekoro Road,” he stated.
Adeyemo said what the PDP intends to achieve with their terror tactics to intimidate people is best known to them, noting that the APC was seriously concerned and worried about the current trend of events.
“Our experience is not an isolated occurrence. At about the same time, the gang descended on our people here in Agbado/Oke-Odo, and agent of our party, Eyitayo Peter was shot by PDP thugs in Orile-Agege. He was not so lucky, may his soul rest in peace.
“Similarly, the PDP terror squad accompanied by a combined team of soldiers and policemen tagged ‘Tactical Squad’ unleashed terror in the Ipaja Ayobo LCDA while Ambode Campaign Team on House to House Campaign in Mosan Okunola area was given the same treatment,” he added.
He said the APC demands that the security agencies remained impartial as required by law and to demonstrate this by promptly identifying, arresting all the perpetrator of these crimes along with their sponsors and bringing them to justice.
“We demand that the police and other security agencies provide adequate security during campaign rallies and other similar events and that all security agencies ensure that all political parties, candidates, members, supporters and the general public be allowed to freely make their choice without hindrance before, during and after the general elections,” he stated.