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Kogi SDP claims attack on its guber candidate was planned



Kogi SDP claims attack on its guber candidate was planned

The Kogi State chapter of the Social Democratic Party {SDP}, has again claimed that the state governor, Yahaya Bello planned the recent attack on the convoy of its governorship candidate, Murtala Ajaka in Lokoja.

The claim was made by the state SDP spokesman, Faruk Adejoh-Audu, when he featured on Channels Television’s ‘Politics Today’ on Monday night.

It would be recalled that Governor Bello, in a statement signed by his Commissioner for Information, Kingsley Fanwo, had claimed that his convoy was blocked and attacked by gunmen he suspected were supporters of Ajaka near the naval base, a few kilometres from Lokoja.

According to the governor, the armed thugs started shooting sporadically at his convoy after they sighted him.

Adejoh-Audu, however, denied the allegation, claiming it wasn’t a true reflection of what happened.

He said: “It was an orchestrated attack. The incident happened around 12.40 pm. We didn’t block the road. The truth of the matter was that things happened very quickly. And as at the time we discovered what was going on, the road has been blocked while some gunmen opened fire on the car of our candidate (SDP), Alhaji Murtala Ajaka.

“At a point, two outriders on power bikes came past. I wasn’t in the car of the candidate but in another car. Those of us who were behind were hearing the sirens but it wasn’t like a convoy per se. The candidate was on his way from Abuja and only stopped to pay homage to a first-class traditional ruler, the Attah Igala in Idah.

Read also: Convoy attack: PDP’s Akpoti-Uduaghan accuses Kogi govt of lying against SDP candidate

“Now after we left, a lot of people most of who we didn’t know including motorbike riders followed the convoy. Some other people on the bridge turned and followed us. At a point, the convoy got extended even beyond our own control. Before we got to Lokoja, there was a place called Banda. That is where you have the naval base.

“The car (Ajaka) also stopped to greet some people. One of them is a commissioner in Yahaya Bello’s government. His name is Bashir Gegu. You remembered I told you he just left the APC?

“Gebu was in a pick-up (hilux) and another pick-up came and crossed the road. The next thing we heard was gunshots. They started shooting. There was panic everywhere. Some people even jumped out of their cars. But the obvious target was the car of our principal.

“The only thing that saved him was that the car was an armoured car. The bullets that rained on the car didn’t penetrate. But not every other person was as lucky as he was. It was an orchestrated attack. A senior advocate of Nigeria, Shuaibu Aruwa, was affected. His own car was penetrated.”

Adejoh-Audu, while speaking on how to prevent innocent people from being hurt before the November governorship election, said President Bola Tinubu must call Governor Bello to order.

According to him, the reason the Kogi governor became too powerful was that he was indulged by former President Muhammadu Buhari , who never intervened in any reported violence in the state.

He said: “It is a very simple thing. We have a new president and new federal government unlike in the last eight years where several people have been killed and nothing ever happened. So that courage and confidence that I can always get away with whatever I do since the president is from my party is there.

“If the new government sends out a strong signal that ‘Look, we are democrats. We’re not going to allow the blood of people (be spilled) in the name of election, I think it will cease.”

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