Chief Olisa Metuh
Violence: CPC flays Metuh over remarks
By Chuks Okocha and Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday asked the leadership of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) to resolve the leadership issue surrounding the alleged one-man ownership of the party.
This came as the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) described as unwarranted, the remarks allegedly made against it by the National Publicity Secretary of PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, that the party is known for violence.
But, the PDP in a statement issued by Metuh re-iterated that “while the PDP is not losing sleep over the merger of the two opposition political parties since it is an exercise in democracy and since they both cannot defeat the PDP at elections, it is however not out of place for us to point out the major defects of the merger and why Nigerians will continue to reject it as an alternative to our great party.”
The statement added: “The onus is entirely on these two parties to accept these glaring facts and seek ways out of the situation or to continue with the delusion that the merger of brood of dictators one of does not disguise its relish for the funeral train, is what Nigerians need at the moment.”
The statement further added that the ACN was entirely owned by Senator Bola Tinubu, who according to the party, brooks no opposition to his dictates.
Meanwhile, CPC in a statement issued yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Rotimi Fashakin, the party stated rather than pointing accusing fingers at someone else, PDP should take the blame for the rising violence in the country.
In apparent response to the remarks by the PDP spokesman in which he characterised the CPC as a party that “believes in violence and religious politics, Fashakin said the last 13 years of the PDP-led Federal Government has witnessed an unprecedented level of violent acts, murder and corruption.
“As a Party, we have come to understand the PDP, as a Party, being peopled by egregiously violent ones, which earned it the sobriquet: ‘nest of killers,” he said.
Fashakin said while image makers of the PDP have penchant for conjectures, insinuations and unsupportable assertions on the issue of violence, CPC could defend its position with verifiable facts.
“It is no secret that the governors of Lagos, Osun and Ekiti States as well as the woefully failed candidate of the party in the recent Ondo State governorship election were Tinubu’s direct imposition. It is also a fact that Tinibu unilaterally chased out Ope Bamidele, who won the primaries for Ekiti Central senatorial district and imposed his preferred candidate. Nigerians can still remember how Tinubu’s wife made her way to the Senate.”
The statement added that the comments by a cross section of Yoruba leaders on the recent victory of the Labour Party (LP) in Ondo State against an earlier call by the ACN for regional integration as the pivot of its campaign was an unmasked rejection of the ambition of one man to lord over an entire region.
“Does the ACN have a constitution beyond what Tinubu dictates? For a start, Tinubu’s position as the leader of the party has no place in the constitution of the ACN yet the man usurps the functions of the party’s constitutional structures, rendering the officers redundant. The National Working Committee of the ACN which is supposed to meet every two months according to section 7, 18a & c of its constitution has only met twice in February and August this year while the de facto NWC meetings hold daily at Boudillion, Lagos Court of Tinubu, the Emperor.
“Is that how to run a party that wants to give Nigeria its President?” If the spokesman of a political party cannot issue a release except what an Emperor that enjoys an unconstitutional party title dictates, would he not resign and assume responsibilities as an aide to the Emperor and allow an independent mind to anchor the publicity of the party? Again, is that possible in a party where the Emperor holds the power of life and death? That is the only reason why Lai Mohammed will continue to enjoy endless term of office as much as he pleases Tinubu.
“The fact of the merger is that of a double jeopardy as the case of the CPC is worse. Apart from the collywobbles of one man dictatorship, the party’s violent antecedent, and the unrepentant posturing of General Buhari, the owner of the party as again captured in his parable of the bloody baboon and monkey earlier this year in Kaduna is a recipe for a road to Somalia. That is not the preference Nigerians will ever imagine.
“At the bottom line, Nigerians are faced with the worst form of indecent propaganda from the duo of Lai Mohammed and Rotimi Fashakin, whom Bola Tinubu also donated to the CPC. It is either they are attacking and insulting the President, the National Assembly or other institutions of democracy or losing sleep and get more rabid when their shortcomings are pointed out or are engaged in the illusion of an all powerful merger that will take over Nigeria.
The statement stressed that: “Unfortunately, these two men are political neophytes who cannot win councillorship elections in their respective wards against the PDP. These are green horns whose clout will at best fetch spokespersons of local government chapters were they members of our great party,” the statement stressed.
He said part of the orgy of violence perpetrated by the PDP-led Federal Government, included, the ordering of the violent invasion of ODI, a predominantly Ijaw community in Bayelsa state in 1999, and the crude and violent invasion of some communities in Benue in 2001, which led to the deaths of no fewer than 300 people.
On corruption, Fashakin said it is on record that the PDP apparatchiks, in a bizarre show of ethical violence on the Nigerian people, rolled out the drums and trumpets to welcome back it’s chieftain, Chief Bode George, who was convicted by a Court of competent jurisdiction for 63-count charge bordering on financial violence on the Nigerian state and had served two-year jail term.
“After his prison sentence, It is on record that, rather than putting this man through a structured party discipline for his misdemeanor, the PDP has continued to throw him up as its champion in obscenity and indecency,” he said.
The CPC Spokesman accused the PDP leadership of having mismanaged the expectations Nigerians for good governance in the last 13 years and of resorting to a game of deceit in order to remain relevant.
“We are very certain that the Nigerian people, being the best judges, are capable of seeing through all the carefully woven obfuscation. On our part, we remain unfazed and would continue to pursue the agenda of peace and ethno-religious harmony of the Nigerian people,” he said.
Fashakin also said the call by the President of the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Pastor Ayo Oritsejafor, for the arrest of the CPC candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari, over unsubstantiated allegations of sponsoring the post-election violence in the North, was laden with partisan motive.