From CHRISTIANA EKPA, Lokoja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) say it has received an extremely disturbing information about the plan of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to rig the Saturday’s Governorship Election, using security agencies, particularly, the Nigerian Army and some unscrupulous INEC personnel.
The grand plan, according to PDP, which had already been executed, is designed to impose the APC candidate against the will of the electorate of Kogi State.
Addressing newsmen in Lokoja, the Chief Communication Officer to Governor Idris Wada, Frank Shaibu, revealed that specific intelligence gathered by their campaign committee indicated that the APC is involved in the devious strategic posting and deployment of security and electoral personnel in order to achieve their diabolic plan. According to him, “A Lieutenant Colonel by the name Isidore Ama was about two weeks ago redeployed to Kogi State by the army authorities apparently at the behest of the APC to help its election efforts. Lt. Colonel Amah, it may interest you to know, headed a team of soldiers that invaded the country home of Senator Atai Aidoko of the PDP and killed four persons in 2007 during the Governorship Election contested by Alhaji Ibrahim Idris and Mr. Abubakar Audu in that year.”
Shaibu further said: “In this election, Lt. Col. Amah has been deployed to Dekina LGA, the home base of Governor Idris Wada, the PDP candidate, with the specific mission to terrorize voters and stalemate elections. To all intent and purposes, this officer has become an experienced election contractor, obviously in cahoots with some of his seniors. The dubious posting of Lt. Col. Ama, we are reliably informed, was procured by the son of the APC Candidate, one Mohammed Audu, of no fixed address.”
He said his party, the PDP, considered the posting of Lt. Col. Ama not only dubious but very curious and hereby demands explanations from the Nigerian Army, as well as challenging the Nigerian Army to make public its posting and the result of its investigations into the four lives that were cut down in a hail of bullets by Lt. Col. Ama and his soldiers in April 2007.
He said the party has equally uncovered several acts of inducement and bribery by the opposition to compromise electoral personnel, stressing that, Electoral Officer posted to Koto, one Christopher Utile without any known reason, unilaterally dropped 40 ad hoc staff that have received INEC training to conduct the elections and replaced them with unknown persons who were ferried in from Benue State in three buses.
Shaibu also said: “When our agents keeping watch, challenged this curious action, Mr. Utile said he was acting on orders from above,” adding: “We are equally aware that a staff of the Federal University, Lokoja, awaiting posting as Returning Officer, received N1 million as gift from Mr. Abubakar Audu today.” He gave the name of the staff as Isa Aminu.
Shaibu also alleged that the running mate of Audu, one James Faleke, indigene of Lagos State, distributed N50,000 each to over 200 ad hoc staff recruited to work in Kabba Bunu LGA. “Apart from security and electoral personnel, the APC has equally recruited several thugs from the Odua People’s Congress (OPC) and several cultists from Edo State funded by Governor Adams Oshiomole. These persons who a cache of arms imported into Lokoja are lodged in three hotels namely: New Royal Estate, Diato Hotel and Ina Hotels. These bandits are led by a protégé of Adams Oshiomole by the name of Philip Shaibu, a serving member of the House of Representatives, and a former factional President of the National Association of Nigerian Students”.
He expressed confidence that all these desperate efforts of manipulating INEC and security personnel will still not snatch victory for them, saying that the APC has orchestrated several petitions against PDP stalwarts and supporters across the state, prominent among who is the indefatigable Hon Friday Sani, aka Makama, as security agents working for the APC’s plan to commence the mass arrest of PDP supporters to pave way for the unpopular APC to have a field day in rigging on Saturday.
Meanwhile, the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Hallu Pai, has identified Christopher Utile as the Staff of the commission and promised to investigate the matter before vote commences.
All calls and text massages to Media person of APC were unanswered as the line was switched off.