IGP arresting our leaders to allow APC rig Saturday’s election, Osun PDP alleges



Uba Group

The People’s Democratic Party in Osun State has accused the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba, of indiscriminate statewide arrest of its leaders in a bid to pave the way for the All Progressives Congress to rig the March 18 State House of Assembly election in the state.

The party, in a ‘save our souls’ statement issued by its caretaker Chairman, Adekunle Akindele on Sunday, threatened to occupy police offices across the state if the police boss does not stop the ongoing arrest of its leaders.

Akindele further accused Baba of serving the interest of the APC ahead of the Saturday’s poll, adding that the police have abandoned their sacred duty of being an impartial law enforcement agent to acting like a politician.

He said, “Our leaders are being arrested in a bid to rig Saturday’s election. We will resist any ploy to manipulate the polls. Osun people voted overwhelmingly for PDP in the last polls. They are ready to freely exercise their voting rights again. Arresting our leaders on Kangaroo charges is an attack on democracy and our fundamental human rights.

“We call on the Inspector General of Police to stop serving the evil interest of the APC. The police boss has a sacred duty to be an impartial enforcer of the law, not an agent of one political party against the other. It is unacceptable for the IGP to take directives on who to arrest or detain from APC chieftains. This is a democracy, not a military dictatorship.

“We will not resort to self-help. We are law abiding citizens and a ruling party in Osun State. But if this harassment of our members continues, we will mobilize and storm all police posts in Osun State in a peaceful protest. Let the IGP arrest all Osun PDP members.”

The party chairman warned IGP Baba against stoking the fire of political conflict in a peaceful state like Osun, adding that, “Is it a sin to win an election in a democracy? Must PDP leaders be detained because they are good democrats? Why has the IGP refused to act on several petitions on the killings of our members? Why are the police authorities shielding APC thugs and working with APC chieftains to arrest the victims instead of the perpetrators of violence?

“We call on western embassies and international human rights organizations to intervene by calling the IGP to order. The conduct of the police in Osun State is threatening peace and security of the state. PDP members are being pushed to the wall.

“We are Nigerians protected by the constitution. We will not surrender our rights. We put the IGP on notice that he will be responsible for any breakdown of law and order in the state. This illegal statewide arrest must stop.”

It could be recalled that Osun had recorded some politically-motivated attacks and killings in some parts of the state in the build-up to the February 25 presidential election even as the APC and PDP have been trading blames on the incidents.