PDP, APC Bicker over Police Presence in Edo Towns

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Adibe Emenyonu in Benin

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and the All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday disagreed over the heavy presence of police in Okpella, Agenebode, Akoko Edo and other parts of the state ahead of the September 19 governorship election.

While the Special Adviser to Edo State Governor on Media and Communication Strategy, Mr. Crusoe Osagie, said there was nothing unusual about the increase in police presence, the spokesperson for the APC campaign council, Mr. John Mayaki faulted the deployment of over 50 police officers to Okpella community to guard the private residences of political appointees of Governor Godwin Obaseki.

Osagie said: “With just a month to the gubernatorial poll in Edo State, security agencies are stepping up their activities across the state. This should not be misconstrued by anyone.

“The claim by the APC is strange because anyone who means well for Edo people should commend the police for doing their job. The APC should not fret if they have no sinister plans.”

Mayaki said “The Police officers were reportedly deployed on the orders of the Governor Godwin Obaseki and have set camp in the building of one Lukman Akemokue, a political aide and ally of the deputy governor, who relocated his mother from the building to make room for the officers.

“Residents of numerous surrounding communities in the area have lamented the Police officers’ night movements characterized by indiscriminate shootings, shouts of obscenities, and other bizarre acts of intimidation which they claim were aimed at inducing fear ahead of the polls”.