The Nigerian Police Force said today that suspected Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, thugs went on the rampage in Ilorin, Kwara and disrupted a rally being held by the All Progressives Congress.
This was contrary to the impression created by Senate President Bukola Saraki on Friday that it was the APC members that were attacking his family home and supporters.
“As we speak, the situation report from Kwara State Police Command was that the APC holding a Governorship campaign rally at Agbaji in Ilorin came under a sudden attack by suspected PDP thugs, who disrupted the rally, damaged five vehicles and some Keke Napep and wounded two innocent people”, police spokesman Jimoh Moshood said.
“The family house of the Senate President was not attacked as being peddled in some social media”, Moshood added.
The APC governorship candidate, Abdulrahman Abdulrazak confirmed the attack on the party’s rally, but he gave a different location.
Kwara APC governorship candidate Abdurazak in hospital to check one of the supporters injured by PDP thugs
“Today’s attack on us during our rally in Ode Alfa Nda shouldn’t shake us rather we should see it as one of the last attempts of a drowning dynasty to stay alive by clutching at anything including violence. Their time is up, they just don’t know it yet”, Abdulrazak tweeted, along with photographs of some of the vehicles damaged during the attack.
The Nation reported that Abdulrazak was whisked away from the rally as thousands of supporters also scampered into safety, after shots were fired. Two persons were injured.
According to The Nation, there was also another attack on APC supporters in Ile Aiyelabegan, a household that is a short distance from the Agbaji homestead of the Senate President Bukola Saraki.
Police revisited Saraki’s allegation in light of Sunday’s disruption of APC rally by suspected PDP thugs.
Senator Saraki at a press conference in Abuja raised concern over his safety, his family and those of his political supporters in his state, Kwara.
He claimed that the police have continued to show hostility to him and his supporters in Kwara State as part of efforts to jeopardise and undermine his personal security and that of his immediate and larger family.
He cited three incidents to illustrate his fear about his security. One of them was the allegation that on Thursday, some supporters and thugs of the APC attacked PDP supporters at Adewole/Adeta, Ilorin, who were holding their weekly ward meetings.
Watch video of the attack here:
Wherever you are, put us in your prayers. #KwaraMustBeFree #OTOGE#SayNoToViolence pic.twitter.com/rYhwaXK0Rb
— Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq (@RealAARahman) January 13, 2019
He claimed that the same thugs went to his family quarters in Agbaji in Ilorin and vandalised houses, shops and inflicted machete wounds on three persons.
“All these destructions took place in the presence of policemen who came with them but watched without any care, as the APC thugs and supporters unleashed violence on our people.
But in a rebuttal, repeated Sunday, the police said all the allegations of the Senate President “are incorrect, misleading and false and should be disregarded and discountenanced by the general Public”.
Police even gave another instance why Saraki’s complaint should be disregarded.
“The media will recall that while Senator Dino Melaye was evading arrest by hiding inside his residence in Maitama, Abuja, the Senate President made a statement that the Nigeria Police Force did not send a letter of invitation to the Clerk of the National Assembly by the Police inviting Senator Dino Melaye to report to the Kogi State Police Command for investigation for offence of criminal conspiracy, attempted murder and culpable homicide, this statement by the Senate President on Senator Dino Melaye was however discovered serially and entirely untrue and false, as the Police Investigation Team provided an acknowledged copy of the said letter stamped received on the 24th July, 2018, by the Clerk of the National Assembly”.
Police reiterated that they did not give any protection to any political thug or shield any APC thug to go to the family quarters of the Senate President in Agbaji, Ilorin and vandalize houses, shops and inflict wounds with machete on three persons as claimed by the Senate President.
“The Police did not equally receive any complaint or report of gunshot and wounding as claimed by the Senate President in other areas he mentioned such as Adewole/Adeta, Ile-otan and ubandawaki/pakata in Ilorin, Kwara State”.
The Police further said that the senate president is fully protected as he enjoys the full panoply of security provided by them.
“It is pertinent to state that all Police personnel attached to the person of the Senate President, his office and family are intact and all the statutory security protection on the person of the Senate President are also accorded him all the time and there was no complaint whatsoever from the Senate President before now to the Police on this.
“The Force sees this unprovoked and unwarranted attack on person of Inspector General of Police by the Senate President as criminal defamation, hate speech and insulting. No doubt, the statement of the Senate President is evidently his characteristic mind set and pattern of misleading and misinforming the public to unjustifiably deride and castigate the leadership of public institutions such as the Nigeria Police Force.
Another injured APC supporter
“It is incumbent on the Force to set the record straight and correct the wrong impressions that must have been created in the minds of the general Public and the International Community from the misinformation and misleading account from the Senate President. The Inspector General of Police is not after the life of the Senate President and did not try any trick to implicate the Senate President in some criminal charges as alleged by the Senate President, Senator Bukola Saraki; the facts are in the public domain about the suspects of the Offa Bank Robbery now being prosecuted who implicated the Senate President on his involvement in the matter”.