… Atiku, PDP condemn attack, want Oshiomhole to rein in his party members
OBIORA IFOH, Abuja
Mayhem and stampede were averted as thugs suspected to be members of the other parties invaded the headquarters of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Thursday when former President Atiku Abubakar came to submit Presidential nomination form.
Atiku, who arrived at the party’s secretariat around 12.30pm, was greeted by a large turnout of supporters who came in different uniforms and with various banners identify the strength of the Presidential aspirant.
According to an eye witness, who does not want his name to be mentioned, fracas started when some individuals were spotted with the flag of the All Progressives Congress (APC) and consequently there were free exchange of blows between the invaders and PDP supporters.
As the fight was ongoing, the entire national headquarters of the party was thrown into pandemonium causing a stampede as the crowd, especially women, scampering for safety, pushing open the gate of the party secretariat, where several women sustained several degrees of injuries.
Daily Champion observed that the fight escalated to the Michael Okpara Street and down to Dalaba Street and several dangerous weapons like cutlass and daggers were freely used but for the quick intervention of mobile police men stationed at the PDP headquarters who shot sporadically to disperse the crowd.As at the time of filling this report, some of the injured victims were receiving first aid attention but there were no report of any arrest yet just as normalcy has returned to the secretariat.
Atiku is vying for the Presidential ticket of the party with about 12 other aspirants.Meanwhile, the former Vice President has condemned the violent incident at Wadata House describing it as uncalled for and undemocratic for any group of individuals to turn an otherwise happy political event into a fracas that threatens the lives and well-being of party supporters who were at the event by choice to support their candidate and party.
The Waziri Adamawa in a statement by his media office called on supporters of all political hues to show maturity and allow the democratic process to proceed unhindered in the interest of the parties and aspirants as well as the nation. He urges his supporters to show restraint even in the face of provocation.
“Atiku praised the Police and other security personnel for containing the situation and protecting innocent and law abiding supporters at the venue.”He advised that Nigerians should always allow peace to reign in order for our leadership selection process to be reliable and credible.
“The former Vice President is optimistic that with the neutral and effective conduct by the Police, there is hope that Nigeria would get the 2019 elections right to the satisfaction of all Nigerians.”While also condemning the incident, the main opposition, the PDP cautioned the APC National Chairman, Adams Oshiomhole, to “rein in his party thugs, who the APC detailed to disrupt activities at the PDP National Secretariat, Abuja.
“The PDP said while it can understand that the APC has been distraught over the renewed surge of Nigerians to the platform of our repositioned party of choice; which signposts our inevitable victory in the 2019 election, the ruling party’s resort to banditry and violent attack on our secretariat is a handshake taken beyond the elbow and will not be tolerated.
“The whole world witnessed with dismay, how APC thugs, brandishing their party’s famished brooms and charms; armed with machetes and other dangerous weapons stormed our national secretariat which has become a beehive of activities and attacked and wounded our members and supporters before they were dispelled by security operatives.”
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