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C’RIVERS: APC plans to import thugs for elections – PDP

THE People’s Democratic Party’s candidate for governor in Cross River State, Prof. Sandy Onor, has alleged that the All Progressives Congress plans to bring thugs into the state to cause mayhem during the elections.

He made that statement today at a press conference that followed the end of his tour of the state’s 18 local government areas.

According to him, “Just after our campaign team peacefully left the North, Ayade led his party into that region and one of the comments we have heard so far from the governor is the allegation that the opposition is planning to import thugs and militants from other parts of the country, to terrorise the state during the general elections. We laughed as we heard this because we know it is exactly what Ayade is planning to do.

“The entire state is aware of how Ayade imported thugs and militants into the northern part of the state for the by-election which held last year. Having realised that his party had woefully lost, he brought in a band of official and unofficial marauders who inflicted mayhem on the electoral officials and seized materials to enable them distort the figures and then submit same to INEC.

“We already know that he intends to repeat this deadly strategy. Unfortunately for him, the plot is dead on arrival as our people have been sufficiently conscientised to stand up for their rights, and to vote and ensure that their votes count.

“I want to place it on record that Senator Ben Ayade’s unfounded alarm is a strategy to get the police to hound, harass, pursue and arrest our supporters who he intends, for obvious reasons, to keep out of circulation by throwing them into detention and remanding them until after the election.”

He added, “His thugs have already started being violent, destroying our billboards, harassing our supporters and causing havoc in the North; the same place we spent about four days campaigning peacefully.”

He called on security agencies to sit up and remain neutral as “we get close to the general elections. They must not allow themselves to be used to torment innocent citizens. One of us, Mr Peter Akpanke, the PDP candidate for the Obudu/Bekwara/Obanliku Federal Constituency in the election, is already being hounded by Ayade, with the tacit support of the police and the judiciary, with a mischievous bench warrant, over a murder charge that Akpanke knows nothing about.

“In fact, Akpanke had gone the extra mile to get the police to apprehend the suspect who killed the policeman in question and the suspect has since willingly cofessed to the crime.

“In times like this, the police and the DSS should live up to their professional calling and maintain their non-partisanship avowal, and do justice to this matter to avoid a breakdown of law and order. The police know the truth and should not allow themselves to be misled.”

He said there is decay in the state and his government if elected would change the narrative.

Onor further stated, “The outgoing government has deceived our people enough. We have, for instance, spoken many times against moves by the governor to embark on last minute programmes and projects, including the plan to conduct a recruitment exercise into the state civil service in the twilight of this administration.

“At best, this is a voodoo exercise meant to curry favour from unsuspecting members of the public. It is one of the antics concocted by the present administration to buy the hearts of the people but unfortunately for them, our people are getting wiser.

“This exercise, if it holds, would end up laced intensely in nepotism, favouritism and sectionalism. It would be purely political and would not meet the genuine needs of the civil service. It is meant to rally troops for the 2023 elections and make the next government look bad by inflicting upon it a wage bill that is unpayable. The timing is wrong and the motive is completely mischievous and wicked, to say the least.”

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