Ahead of the March 9 governorship elections, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP has described illegal the alleged occupation and provocative besiegement of PDP states in the South South, namely Bayelsa, Rivers, Delta, Akwa-Ibom and Cross River states by the military.
he party noted that the “illegal operation is to further militarize the South South zone, use soldiers to suppress voters and re-enact the massive rigging of polls for the APC, as was done in the widely discredited February 23 Presidential election.”
Addressing a world press conference in Abuja Thursday, National Publicity Secretary of the party, Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP warned of grave consequences, stressing that “those who sow the wind should also be ready to reap the whirlwind.”
The statement continued: “It is clear that after using military to unleash violence, alter results and muscle out fabricated 25 percent ballot for President Muhammadu Buhari across the South South states and other PDP strongholds, the APC now wants to use the military to fight our governors, suppress our members and forcefully take over our states.
“Nigerians already know how APC leaders from the South South are going around boasting that the military will use violence to give them governorship election triumph, the same way it did during the Presidential election, where innocent Nigerians were brutalized and murdered.
“Nigerians are witnesses to how 13 persons were murdered in Akuku-Toru Local Government in Rivers state, in addition to those killed in Ahoada East, Ahoada West and Emohua Local Government Areas during the Presidential election.
“In Brass, East Senatorial district of Bayelsa state, it was a war situation as the military took over the electoral process and even declared winners. Soldiers were deployed to the remotest villages where the voters were suppressed and results altered in favour of President Buhari.
“Now that it is clear to all that the 2019 election is not between the PDP and the APC, but a war between the state apparatus of power and the PDP, the PDP cannot continue to fold its hands in the face of this killings and suppression of voters by the APC.
“The PDP, ahead of the March 9 elections, cautions the APC and its compromised security agents to note that the people of the Niger Delta are already hurting over the killings of their compatriots during the February 23 election and any further provocation will be a clear recipe for crisis.”
While reiterating its commitment to peaceful polls, the party stressed that “nobody has a monopoly of show of strength. The people of the Niger Delta are peace loving, but have never, in the history of our nation, allowed themselves to be suppressed or vanquished by oppressive forces.
“It is incontrovertible that the South South is a stronghold of the PDP and the people are fully mobilized for the March 9 election. Our members and supporter are in every polling unit, every collation centre, all exit and entry points in the area and will use all legitimate means available in a democracy to defend themselves and their votes.
“In this regard, any person who yields him or herself as a tool in the hands of evil should therefore be ready to face the legitimate anger of the people.
“Moreover, the PDP cautions the APC to be mindful of the fact that the Niger Delta region is the mainstay of our national economy and that any assault on the zone is capable of spelling doom for our nation.
“The PDP calls the attention of the world to the devious devices of the APC against the South South as such constitutes a huge threat to our corporate existence as a nation.
“The PDP restates that the South South is our stronghold and calls on our members and supporters in the zone and, of course, the entire nation to boldly come out en-masse to vote on March 9 and use every legitimate means to monitor and protect their votes to the end.
Fielding questions on the sidelines of the press conference, Ologbondiyan dismissed claims by APC national chairman, Comrade Adams Oshiomhole, that Atiku Abubakar was unelectable. According to the publicity scribe, the PDP does not take Oshiomhole’s utterances serious.