The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has decried the alleged blockade of the Government House in Ekiti State by security agencies which it said placed Governor Ayodele Fayose under house arrest.
The party described the incident as an attack on the very fabric of the country’s democracy.
Regarding its concerns over the July 14 Ekiti State governorship election, the party said information available to it revealed that part of the alleged rigging design of the All Progressives Congress (APC) is to deploy state governors in each of the local government areas across the state to coordinate the plot.
The party also alleged that APC is plotting to use the staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to announce a pre-determined result in the Ekiti State governorship election.
Secondus addressed a press conference Wednesday on behalf of the National Working Committee (NWC) of the PDP on what he described as “the unsavory situation in Ekiti, being orchestrated by the APC-led federal government to scuttle the July 14, 2018 governorship election in the state”.
In his statement titled: “Democracy Under Attack In Nigeria”, Secondus alleged that a detachment of riot policemen was deployed in the Ekiti Government House early Wednesday morning and that no one was allowed to go in or out of the Government House.
“This morning, in its desperation to forcefully take over Ekiti State, the APC-led federal government deployed armed police personnel led by one Compol Mopol Echel Echel, who blocked the Ekiti State Government House, attacked and placed the democratically elected governor of Ekiti State, Governor Ayodele Fayose, under house arrest. At the moment, no one goes in or out of the Government House.
“The invading police squad sacked the official security at the Government House, fired sporadically into the premises during which Governor Fayose was beaten up by policemen and brought down by volleys of teargas while several others were injured,” he said.
Also, Chairman of PDP Board of Trustees (BoT), Senator Walid Jubrin, warned that security agencies should not allow Ekiti State to be a battle ground that will be difficult to manage.
He said: “30,000 policemen and other security agencies totalling up to 50,000 should be judiciously utilised to protect the people of Ekiti, protect their votes, lives and properties. They should not allow any bloodshed to be recorded.”
A worried Secondus, who was flanked by all the NWC members, said the country’s democracy has finally come under heavy attack, adding that the PDP had earlier alerted the nation that “President Muhammadu Buhari and his party, the All Progressives Congress (APC) were on self-succession cruise to turn our nation into a fascist state”.
Secondus, who said the APC National Chairman, Mr. Adams Oshiomhole, had earlier boasted that they were going to crush the opposition, noted that the siege may have began with the assault on Ekiti Government House.
“The situation in Ekiti State has reinforced the signpost of a manifest desire by the APC and its leaders to subdue the resilient spirit of Nigerians and set up a totalitarian regime in our country.
“This, we have been informed, is part of the ‘order from above’, in line with the earlier boast by the Buhari-led APC, to ‘cage’ Governor Fayose ahead of the July 14, 2018 Ekiti governorship election, so as to grant their agents a field day to rig the election.
“In fact, we have been made aware that the invasion was a plot to assassinate Governor Fayose and blame it on accidental discharge by one of the policemen,” he said.
Secondus warned that PDP will consider the siege on an elected governor and a Government House “as a recipe for violence; a complete attack on our democratic order and direct assault on the corporate existence of Ekiti and her people as a federating part of our nation”.
“We know that this is part of the desperate effort by the APC-led federal government to intimidate, subjugate, frighten and overawe the people and unleash a rigging mechanism for the election.
“Information available to the PDP reveals that part of the rigging design includes the deploying of an APC state governor in each of the local government areas across the state to coordinate the plot.
“Also our intelligence reveals that the 30,000 policemen as well as some compromised military personnel deployed in Ekiti State are being positioned to embark on mass arrest and harassment of Ekiti citizens with the view to frightening them and preventing them from participating in the election.
“Furthermore, some heavily armed DSS personnel are being deployed to work with some compromised officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to smuggle in preloaded card reader machines and result sheets, to be exchanged in advance, which they will attempt to deliver to APC agents.
“The PDP is fully aware of the actors in this heinous plot including some directors in INEC, particularly in its Information Communication Technology (ICT) Department, who have been holding clandestine meetings with APC leaders.
‘We are also not unaware that the stage is being set for the APC to use INEC to announce a pre-determined result in Ekiti State governorship election,” he said.
Secondus said the Ekiti people are fully ready now, more than ever before, to face all threats and harassment and to resist any attempt to forcefully take over their state.
“We therefore warn all thugs imported from neighbouring states to note that they are in Ekiti at their own peril.
Ekiti people and residents know themselves and will never allow any stranger to participate in the electoral process. Any attempt by anybody to test the will of the people might be faced with dire consequences,” he added.