Onyebuchi Ezigbo, Adedayo Akinwale, Mercy Apollos in Abuja and Adibe Emenyonu in Benin City
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) and INTERPOL to help track down the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole, believed to be on the run since his reported interrogation by the Department of State Services (DSS) over alleged corruption charges.
This is coming as a chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and Director General of the Voice of Nigeria (VON), Mr. Osita Okechukwu, has asked Oshiomhole to resign honourably to save the party from further embarrassment.
However, a group, South South Unity League (SSUL), has cautioned the Department of State Service to exercise restraint especially as the 2019 election draws near, noting that it has become expedient for the agency to abstain from partisan politics.
The main opposition party said it is ludicrous that the APC, in its lying proclivities, believes that by dismissing Oshiomhole’s arrest as a rumour and aiding him to momentarily flee the country, would succeed in getting him off the DSS hook as well as sweeping the matter out of public discourse with its famished broom.
The party in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan noted that Oshiomhole’s swift flight out of the country, at the heat of the investigation goes to confirm allegations that President Muhammadu Buhari is shielding him from prosecution for fear that his investigation would implicate certain interests at the presidency and the APC.
“No! Nigerians are already aware that Oshiomhole has not denied his investigation including his reported confession that the presidency was in the loop of all his actions.
“The PDP had always cautioned Adams Oshiomhole of his unbridled arrogance, lust for power and alleged embezzlement of public funds for which he must surely have his day in the hands of the law.”
The PDP therefore demanded that APC and the Buhari Presidency must immediately produce Oshiomhole to face investigation and prosecution in the court of law.
While addressing a press conference yesterday in Abuja, the PDP insisted that the trademoni programme by the government was nothing but vote buying , stressing that the party has consistently expressed its concern about that process.
Ologbondiyan said, “We have vehemently expressed our dissatisfaction with this manner of vote buying and we commend the National Assembly for taking it up as a responsibility to challenge the process and to investigate it.
Reacting to the removal of over 300, 000 ineligible voters by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) from the voters’ register, Ologbondiyan said the electoral body should also deal with the issue of minor registrants.
In a related development, a chieftain of APC and Director General of VON, Osita Okechukwu, has asked Oshiomhole to resign honourably to save the party from further embarrassment.
Speaking against the background of allegations of corruption arising from the recent party primaries, Okechukwu said Oshiomhole’s exit will save the ruling party from the serious moral burden his recent arrest by the DSS has imposed on it.
He also urged the DSS and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to immediately probe the call logs of Oshiomhole in the recent times.
Addressing a press conference at the party’s national secretariat yesterday, Okechukwu said it is imperative that Oshiomhole resigns forthwith to save the APC and President Muhammadu Buhari in the eve of 2019 crucial general election.
Okechukwu further alleged that Oshiomhole is running away from duty to evade the substitution window, “meant to redress the grievances of some of us, who are casualties of his nepotism”.
Meanwhile, the DSS has been cautioned to exercise restraint especially as the 2019 election draws near.
The South South Unity League (SSUL), a pressure group, gave the advice yesterday in a statement signed by its Secretary General, Dr. Ochuko Egbemayon, which was made available to THISDAY in Benin City.
He said the statement was necessitated by the perceived persecution of Oshiomhole by security agencies in collaboration with the opposition PDP.
The statement argued that all over the world, before high profile citizens like chairmen of political parties are invited by security agencies, the President of the country must be briefed.
He added that the way and manner Oshiomhole was whisked into DSS office was a premeditated ploy to force him out of office.
The statement further reminded the DSS that Oshiomhole is not an orphan that should be toiled with as he served Edo State purposefully and is currently rendering the same desirable national service by enforcing party supremacy and the ethos of direct primaries to the envy of many enemies of true democracy.
The SSUL therefore warned that it would not tolerate any threat to Oshiomhole’s life and health by anyone or group no matter how highly placed.