Mr Babatunde Gbadamosi, the Governorship Candidate of the Action Democratic Party (ADP) in Lagos State, says if perpetrators of the violence at Tuesday’s APC Lagos rally are not swiftly dealt with, it will send a wrong signal to the electorate.
Gbadamosi, who condemned the violence in strong terms, told newsmen in Lagos on Wednesday that it portended a grave outlook for the rallies and elections if the violence remained unchecked or the perpetrators were not immediately punished.
The Lagos APC flag-off campaign rally on Tuesday had been marred by violence, leaving several people injured, including two journalists who sustained minor bullet wounds.
Following the incident, the Lagos State Police Command has declared a chieftain of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), Mustapha Adekunle aka Seigo, wanted, over allegations of being the mastermind of the whole fracas.
The Command’s spokesperson, CSP Chike Oti, said that Seigo and his entourage gained entrance to the rally ground as supporters before his group suddenly attacked another NURTW chieftain popularly known as MC Oluomo.
Oti also disclosed that two persons had been arrested in connection with the incident.
In his reaction, Gbadamosi, however, expressed concern about the security of individuals and journalists participating in future rallies in the state and country in general.
“One shudders to think what might happen if this trend of unbridled violence is allowed to continue into the general elections proper.
“These groups of thugs must be punished. The APC should also assist the police in fishing them out.
“The police must also make their prosecution known to the public, so as to assure them that elections in the state will be violence-free,” he said.
The ADP candidate said that if the perpetrators were not immediately fished out and punished, it could affect the turnout on election days, as people may not come out to vote for fear of being attacked.
According to him, police should also ban the smoking of weed, alcohol and other related substances at rally/campaign venues. (NAN)