- Parties Raise Alarm
By Sikiru Obarayese
With few weeks to the September 22 governorship election in Osun, there has been gradual build up of tension, as political parties in the state have been accusing one another of acts capable of inciting violence among their supporters.
While the ADP is accusing the ruling APC of plans to use state forces against its members, the APC is alleging the later of vandalizing its billboards in some areas of the state and the SDP also accused other parties of plans to indulge in vote buying.
Spokesperson of the APC in Osun, Kunle Oyatomi Esq, on Saturday accused Social Democratic Party, (SDP), and, Action Democratic Party, (ADP), of destroying its campaign banners mounted in Ife and Iwo.
The party scowled on the extensive vandalization of its candidate’s billboards in the two cities which are the home towns of the ADP and SDP gubernatorial candidates, Alhaji Moshood Adeoti and Senator Iyiola Omisore respectively.
The APC, pointed at Senator Omisore and Alhaji Adeoti as the beneficiaries of the vandalism, saying the duo will account for the act in the face of law.
Oyatomi disclosed that candidates, who remain silent when their supporters are committing crime, would be called upon to account because they are the beneficiaries of the vandalism of these rascals.
The APC had threatened to do what is necessary through the law enforcement agencies to sustain peace in the state.
However, the SDP and the ADP have denied vandalizing the billboards of the ruling party in the said two towns.
While reacting to the accusation, the SDP said the APC should check itself and stop associating the party and its candidate with its (APC) woes in the State.
SDP described the APC statement as an act capable of inciting violence among party supporters and urged the party to conduct its activities with decorum.
SDP frowned at the claim by the APC in the Press Release that “candidates who remain silent when their supporters are committing crime, would be called upon to account because they are the beneficiaries of the vandalism of these rascals”, saying, “this statement to us in the SDP especially to Senator Omisore “is unfortunate, uncalled for and undemocratic”.
Also, the ADP called on the public to ignore the allegation, saying it was part of a grand plan to find excuses to arrest major contenders in the election.
Its statement, which was signed by the Director of Media and Publicity, Moshood Adeoti Campaign Organization, Mr Kayode Agbaje, said findings by the party showed that no billboard was vandalized in both towns.
“We also want to state it for the record that the party is also capable of vandalizing its own billboards and later come back to accuse others of committing the crime,” the statement read in part.
Agbaje also alleged APC for vandalizing its party’s campaign billboard located at Kajola along the busy Osogbo-Ilesa Road recently and explained that the culprit is believed to be APC agents.
It also raised alarm over an alleged plot by APC to have some of its prominent members arrested on trumped-up charges days to the election.
The Director of Publicity and Information of the party Mr. Ayobami Fakeye in a statement alleged that the APC is planning to kidnap, arrest or even eliminate some of his party members before the election.
Similarly, the chairman of SDP in Osun, Dr Bayo Faforiji accused some parties for inducing people with money to have their vote ahead the governorship poll.
According the him, “Investigation has shown that some unscrupulous elements from the quarters of failed candidates are all out now, in Osogbo, the state capital, running helter-sketer and luring the unsuspecting public into selling their consciences for provisional cash.”
“With the issue of “see and buy” in the July election of Ekiti State staring our nascent democracy in the face, it is crucial to point out that the action is not only condemnable, it is also threatening the credibility and fairness of the forthcoming September 22 governorship election in Osun state.”