The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has cautioned President Muhammadu Buhari to jettison the plot to use the police as a tool to intimidate voters and rig the Irepodun/Ekiti/Oke-Ero/Isin Federal Constituency by-election, in Kwara State, scheduled for Saturday.
The party cautioned President Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) to bear in mind that such a plot will be a direct invitation to crisis, as the people of Kwara State are already fully rallied behind the PDP in firm resistance and to dismantle all APC rigging machinery at the polls.
The party in a statement by its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, alleged that the APC and the Buhari Presidency are bent on manipulating the electoral process, including using security agencies, particularly, the police against the will of the people.
The PDP said it is privy to clandestine meetings at the Presidency, where APC leaders handed down orders to the police high command to compromise the security architecture in Kwara state by transferring the District Police Officers (DPOs) in the nine police districts of the Federal Constituency and replacing them with officers believed to be pliable to instructions to execute the APC’s rigging script in the election.
The party stressed that “the people of Kwara state already have details of the brief handed to the new DPOs, including providing cover for APC thugs procured to unleash violence on voters and PDP supporters, snatch ballot boxes and disrupt elections in certain areas as well as to alter election results to favour of the APC candidate.
“The people are also aware of the directives to harass, intimidate, arrest, and detain indigenes of Kwara state, and to provide cover for the importation of aliens from other areas by the APC to participate in the election”.
The PDP as a result cautioned the APC and its compromised security and electoral officials to retrace their steps or face the full wrath of the people of Kwara state, particularly, those in Irepodun/Ekiti/Oke-Ero/Isin Federal Constituency.
The party said “the people are now at full alert and completely rallied to protect their political territory and to defend their votes to the end with every means available to them as free citizens under the law.
“It is a settled fact that Irepodun/Ekiti/Oke-Ero/Isin Federal Constituency and indeed, Kwara state, remains the stronghold of the PDP”.
It added that its candidate, Saheed Alatishe, enjoys the support of the overwhelming majority of the people who are not ready to yield their mandate to any other person, no matter the level of intimidation or threat from the enemies of democracy.