Ahead of the forthcoming general election, the People’s Democratic party, PDP Imo state has raised concern over the incessant attack on some of its prominent members,especially the repeated attack on its candidate for Ideato Federal Constituency, Barr Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere.
The party made this known during a world press conference. It described the attack as a threat to the 2023 general election and tagged it as Abuse of state power by the APC led administration in the state.
The party disclosed that it is committed to strengthening democracy and ensure that the “reign of Iron first tyranny Imo state is not allowed to overwhelm the state.
According to a press statement made available to Newsecho, “In the past three years, Imo State has been under the rulership of an APC regime which emergence till date remains a mystery to the people. Through a judicial coup, a man who came fourth in the 2019 governorship election became the Governor of the State. And since this travesty occured, there has been a sustained effort by the unelected and anti-people regime to dismantle all democratic institutions in the State”.
“Just recently, Imo people woke up to hear that the State House of Assembly had been railroaded by the Executive into voting against the autonomy of the local government system, the judiciary and even the legislature! This brings home the reality of a conscripted political space in Imo, where the innermost intentions of the Governor is to erect an empire for himself and convert free citizens of the State to his conquered vassals and serfs. Imo State today occupies the top positions in all the indices of social misery in Nigeria”.
It further expressed worry that the security situation of the state has worsened as “candidates, vocal members and prominent leaders of our Party have been targeted and attacked in the most gruesome ways”.
It recalled that “the last one week, the Chairman of our Party in Ogbaku Ward in Mbaitoli LGA has been shot by gunmen who laid ambush around his residence and opened fire at him upon his return in the evening. A Judge has been dragged out of the courtroom and slaughtered like a goat. Another court building has been razed. The member representing Orlu State Constituency in the House of Assembly, who also is the Candidate of our Party for that Constituency, has had his house burnt down. All these happened just in the past one week”.
“Recall that on December 23, 2022, the convoy of Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere was attacked in Ideato as he returned home from Abuja, and he narrowly escaped death. When this happened, we took appropriate steps to ensure that justice was done. We wrote the security agencies. But to our shock, no arrest has been made till date. We are not even certain if the authorities ever open an investigation into that matter”.
The party disclosed that despite its efforts to make the security agencies to arrest those fingered in the attack, they still kept mute over the various attack and not a single statement from the police.
The party further alleged that all the attacks on Ugochinyere began immediately after “he exposed the widespread and mind-boggling compromise of the INEC voter register. This is what is now known as the Omuma Magic”. “It is now clear that PDP members and candidates are generally endangered in Imo State, and the current security leadership in the State cannot provide a neural and fair atmosphere for a democratic electoral contest to take place. Already, our party has intercepted intelligence about a plot to whisk away most prominent leaders, members and candidates of the party ahead of the elections”.
The party further recommended that all heads of security agencies in the state be redeployed and urged the Federal Government to establish an independent panel of inquiry to unravel the Imo killings and unearth the real identities of those behind the so-called Unknown Gunmen in the State. They further urged Ideato people, PDP members and supporters of Ikenga Ugochinyere to never yield to the threats and intimidation but vote massively for its candidate Ikenga Imo Ugochinyere during the general election as he promised quality and enviable political representation.