Opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, yesterday said Nigeria is in perilious times following a “desperate clampdown” on opposition leaders and perceived opponents of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
Addressing a press conference at the PDP national secretariat, the national publicity secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan declared that as the 2019 election gets closer, the APC administration is already panicking and has deployed various machinations to suppress the opposition.
“The All Progressives Congress, APC, having realized that they stand no chance in the 2019 general elections, is now deploying all wicked machinations to cause confusion, heighten political tension, hounding and arresting of opposition leaders, making spurious allegations and attacking influential Nigerians, including former heads of state, all to instill fear on the polity.
“Today, our dear nation, Nigeria, has finally fallen into a perilous time! There are fears and trepidation everywhere. The safety, personal freedom and wellbeing of Nigerians, particularly, opposition members are threatened.
“Having failed in their corruption smear campaign against the PDP and many notable Nigerians, the APC and the Presidency cabal have now devised a devious machination to rope in, frame up, implicate and ultimately incarcerate marked opposition leaders and other dissenting voices over fabricated security charges.
“Part of this design, as already exposed by the Special Adviser to President Buhari, Mr. Femi Adesina, on Arise TV, is to link such opposition leaders and dissenting voices with the widespread killings in various parts of the country, while forgetting that President Buhari had earlier blamed the attacks on invaders from Late Muammar Gaddafi’s Libya, while his Director General of State Security Services, SSS, blamed it on herdsmen from neighbouring countries.
“The wicked clampdown has started. Only yesterday, we were made aware of the arrest and detention of former Benue State governor, Hon. Gabriel Suswam, who has been kept incommunicado without access to his lawyers, while the Federal Government is not forthcoming with the details of the reasons behind the arrest and detention.
“There are already fears that other opposition leaders and dissenting voices have been placed under watch and will be dragged in and framed up on security charges, so as to keep them out of circulation ahead of the elections.
“Nigerians are already aware of the alarm raised by former President Olusegun Obasanjo of alleged plots by the Buhari administration to frame, arrest and detain him indefinitely on trumped up charges, ostensibly following his criticisms and open rejection of the administration for its failures and manifest misrule.
“The world is also aware of the numerous alleged plots by the APC and its Federal Government to frame up and humiliate Senate President Bukola Saraki, Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremmadu, Senators Dino Melaye and Shehu Sani, as well as Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike and his Ekiti state counterpart, Governor Ayo Fayose.
“Also, there are concerns about the safety of former Chief of Army Staff and former defence minister, Gen. Theophilus Y. Danjuma (rtd), following the fear expressed by Rivers State Governor Wike that Gen. Danjuma’s life might be in danger after his comments in March, this year, on possible complicity of the State in the killings in Taraba state.
“Only yesterday (Wednesday), an explosive device was discovered at the Ebonyi state PDP secretariat, either planted to blow up our secretariat and kill our members or to set up our leaders.
“These attacks, threats and intimidation targeted at influential Nigerians, particularly, past leaders, show clearly that the APC and the Buhari Presidency are very scared of their inevitable defeat in the 2019 general elections and now seek to apply all machinations to overheat the polity and ostensibly frustrate the process.”
While declaring that members of the PDP cannot be cowed, he appealed to Nigerians “to stand firm, remain united in condemning and resisting the intimidations and all anti-democratic tendencies of the APC administration.”