â€¢ Alleges APC plots presidentâ€™s sole candidacy in 2019
By Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has described as undemocratic and completely unacceptable, President Muhammadu Buhariâ€™s comment that security agencies will deal decisively with any persons or group that dares to criticise the handling of security under his administration.
The party said after a thorough review of all issues and the fact that nobody, apart from the president himself, politicised the Dapchi issue when he boasted that his response time was faster than that of former President Goodluck Jonathan, it feels that President Buhariâ€™s pronouncement on alleged politicisation of security issues is targeted at emasculating opposition and those with contrary opinions to the views of the All Progressives Congress (APC) interests.
â€œThe presidentâ€™s statement completely betrays a dangerous political intolerance and utter disdain for the rule of law and constitutionally guaranteed freedom of speech and opinion of citizens in a democracy,â€ it said
PDP however said President Buhari should note that Nigerians can no longer be intimidated or cowed as they are now, more than ever before, ready to protect their constitutionally guaranteed rights as enshrined in our c
The party also accused the ruling APC-led federal government of planning to strangulate the main opposition party and plot the way for the self-succession plan of their candidate, President Buhari.
It alleged that part of grand plan is to exterminate all known and perceived political opposition platforms in our country.
It said it has been following up on the activities of the APC ahead of the 2019.
â€œOur attention has been drawn to a press statement by the Minister of Information, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, wherein he demanded that the certificate of registration issued to the PDP by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) should be withdrawn because the PDP lost in an election and according to him, does not know how to function as an opposition party.
â€œWe want to alert all Nigerians of a clandestine plot by the APC-led federal government to strangulate the main opposition party and plot the way for the self-succession plan of their candidate, President Buhari.
â€œOur party has been following all the schemes and shenanigans of the APC as 2019 general election draw nearer.
â€œThe main plank of the plot is to ensure that President Buhari runs as a sole candidate in 2019. To achieve this grand plan, they must work to exterminate all known and perceived political opposition platforms in our country,â€ the opposition party said.
Also, the PDPÂ described the statement by the former Minister of Defence, Gen. Theophilus Danjuma (rtd), that Nigerians should defend themselves against killers as yet another testimony of the tragic situation which the Buhari pesidency and the APC have dragged the nation.
It restated its call for a UN monitored independent inquest on the â€œsecurity situation in the country.
The party said Danjumaâ€™s statement justifies its stand that the Buhari presidency and the dysfunctional APC must be held responsible for the agonising state, adding that Nigerians are now daily paying the supreme price because of the failures of a grossly incompetent leadership and a deceitful ruling party.
The PDP, in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, yesterday, said the pronouncement, coming from an army general, a former Chief of Army Staff and former Defence Minister ofÂ
Danjumaâ€™s status, is weighty and directly reflected the ugly situation in the country under the APC.
â€œIt said the fact that citizens and communities across the country are now resorting to self-defence is also a clear demonstration that Nigerians, across board, have completely lost confidence in President Buhari and the APC.
â€œIt is instructive to recall that former Presidents Olusegun Obasanjo and Ibrahim Babangida, both former military leaders, army generals and patriots, had earlier raised the issue of unabating bloodletting and pogrom in our country under the APC and the Buhari presidency.
â€œPainfully, the APC-controlled federal government has not only failed in finding solution but is also contending with allegations of conspiracy and acts that are believed to have emboldened attacks against innocent Nigerians.
â€œNigerians are no longer feeling secured in their land. Our country has, in close to three years, assumed a status of killing field where defenceless citizens are despoiled, raped and mowed by insurgents and marauders in Benue, Taraba, Yobe, Gombe, Kaduna, Adamawa, Borno, Plateau, Nasarawa, Rivers, Enugu, Kogi, among other states.
â€œUnfortunately, the Buhari-led APC federal government remains aloof and has failed to take decisive steps that will apprehend the masterminds of the carnage.â€
It added: â€œInstead, what we are witnessing are complete government insensitivity, allegations of complicity and compromise of security around soft targets and dishing out of false information, as was the case in Benue, Yobe, Taraba and other states where Nigerians have come under heavy attacks from marauders.
â€œMore intriguing is that the Presidency and the APC federal government have refused to come out clear on their roles in the alleged compromising of security in troubled areas, particularly the reported withdrawal of troops from Dapchi prior to the abduction of the schoolgirls. Nigerians are also yet to see the action taken by President Buhari against the Inspector General of Police (IG), Ibrahim Idris, for flouting the presidential orders that he should relocate to troubled Benue in the heat of attacks on the state.
Similarly, the loud silence of the federal government on the alleged importation of military equipment by APC interests in Kogi State remains ominous.
â€œFurthermore, the fact that we now have a situation where government confesses to back-channel negotiations with insurgents; hasty offering of amnesty to marauders and killers, allegations of round-tripping in billions of naira on alleged shady ransom payments and swap deals with insurgents also leaves much to be desired under the currentÂ
â€œWhile we restate our call for a UN monitored independent inquest on the â€œsecurity situation in our country, we stand with Nigerians in our moment of national despair even as we work collectively on our repositioned PDP to end the misrule of the APC and restore our nation to the path of peace, national cohesion and economic prosperity.â€
Also, the Indigenous People of Biafra, IPOB has backed Danjuma on his recent comment that the army was colluding with killer herdsmen to unleash terror on Taraba people.
Danjuma was said to have made the comment at Taraba State University during a function.
IPOB reacting to it, said Danjumaâ€™s comments were in order, and that they were not surprised about the revelation as its leader, Nnamdi Kanu, had prophesied four years ago about the current happenings.