“The open boasts and direct threats by the ruling party to “capture” or win Ekiti back at all costs is beginning to manifest.”
A leader of the All progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu, has condemned last Sunday’s attack on members of the party by the police.
The APC members were attacked by the police in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, while on a peaceful procession and campaign.
The attack came a day after President Goodluck Jonathan and other leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, held a rally in the capital city during which the party’s candidate, Ayo Fayose, was presented with its flag for the June 21 governorship election.
Mr. Tinubu said the unprovoked attack on innocent citizens because they belonged to another party was the height of political intolerance and could heighten the doubts most Nigerians have about the ability of the PDP-led Federal Government to guarantee free and fair elections in Ekiti and Osun States as well as the 2015 general elections.
“The open boasts and direct threats by the ruling party to “capture” or win Ekiti back at all costs is beginning to manifest,” he said.
“The impunity of the police officers in Ekiti and glaring partisanship is clearly endorsed by the power that be.
“We this instance, we will demand for justice and enforcement of our fundamental human rights. I am fully with Governor Kayode Fayemi and the people of Ekiti State in confronting this rising tyranny and defeating barbaric tendencies”.
Mr. Tinubu, a former governor of Lagos State, said the international community should be put on notice that the present government was too desperate to be trusted to protect the fundamental rights of Nigerians and to conduct free and fair elections.
Nigerians, according to him “are confronted with a government that sanctions impunity while laying false claims to being democratic.”
He added, “What was the crime of APC members and their supporters in Ekiti that they were tear-gassed, shot at and killed? Is sweeping the streets and singing party songs in a peaceful procession now a crime in Jonathan’s country?
“If you are sure you have people to vote for you, why resort to violent means? Political campaigns should be a celebration of democracy not war. Why are we promoting with the barrel of the gun and giving democracy tainted with the blood of the innocent to our people?
“This is not the liberty we seek or the democracy we need. What happened in Ekiti is criminal. It is unacceptable. It is a direct assault on the rights and freedom of an elected governor and his people. It must not be allowed to stand.”
Mr. Tinubu said APC believed in the contest of ideas, how to create jobs, provide security, ensure health infrastructure development and provide life more abundant for millions of our people.
“APC is not about the promotion and perpetration of violence, but about ideas and peaceful competition in an atmosphere that is free and fair. Our adversaries must be mindful also that nobody has the monopoly of violence,” he said.
“Peaceful and civilized approach to issues trumps violence. This government must rescue millions of Nigerians from their poverty rather than intimidate them with the Police,” he said.