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NO-FLY ZONE: PDP accuses Nigerian govt of plotting to take over Zamfara

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The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Wednesday accused the Federal Government of plotting to take over Zamfara State with the declaration of a no-fly zone in the state.

The federal government had on Tuesday declared a no-fly zone in Zamfara and banned mining activities in a bid to check the activities of bandits and other criminals in the state.

However, the PDP in a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, alleged that the government had orchestrated a plot to impose state of emergency in Zamafara following the refusal of Governor Bello Matawalle to switch to the All Progressives Congress (APC).

The statement read: “Our party rejects this attempt by power-mongers in the APC administration to undermine and subvert the democratic order in Zamfara State by creating the impression that the state government, under Governor Bello Matawalle, is to blame for the failures of the APC-led federal government to contain insecurity in the state.

“It is instructive to recall that the plot by the APC to derail the Bello Matawalle administration and forcefully take over the control of the state started immediately after the Supreme Court handed him victory in the Zamfara State governorship election; a plot which heightened after Governor Bello Matawalle refused the pressure to decamp to the APC.

“Nigerians can recall that our party had on December 19, 2020, issued a statement to alert of plots by the National Caretaker Committee of the APC, using an impostor, as spokesperson, to heighten insecurity in the North-West part of our country.

“The PDP had in that statement, further alerted of conspiracies by the APC to use the said impostor to destabilize North-West states, particularly Zamfara, by creating the space for acts of violence and blame it on Governor Bello Matawalle.

“Our party had also expressed concerns on series of devious statements against Governor Bello Matawalle by the APC, a party that has been exposed to be encouraging acts of terrorism, banditry and kidnapping in our country.

“We invite Nigerians to further note how the APC has been quiet over disturbing videos, which had gone viral, showing self-confessed bandits admitting their fury of being abandoned by the APC after the party use them to muscle the 2015 and 2019 elections.

READ ALSO: Nigerian govt bans mining in Zamfara, declares no-fly zone

“Equally disturbing is the attempt by some APC leaders, who are masquerading under extraneous organizations, to seek political capital out of the situation in Zamfara State, which escalated due to the failures and compromises of the APC-led administration.

“We demand that the APC should leave Governor Bello Matawalle alone and take up their responsibility of confronting bandits, terrorists, kidnappers and vandals, particularly those they brought from other countries.

“Our party insists that the statutory onus, under our democracy, is on President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Government to secure life and property in all parts of Nigeria, including Zamfara State.

“It is further instructive to state that the Bello Matawalle administration adopted an intervention approach as a distressing measure following the manifest failures of the Muhammadu Buhari presidency to guarantee the security of lives and property in the state.

“It is on record that Governor Bello Matawalle is not the first governor, particularly in the North-West, to adopt such approach in the face of the huge incapacity of the Buhari administration to save lives.

“More so, there is escalated banditry, terrorism, kidnapping and other forms of violent acts in APC-controlled states of the North-West like Kaduna and Katsina; in the North-East of Borno and Yobe as well as the North Central states of Niger, Nasarawa, Plateau and Kogi, yet no attempt has been made by the Buhari presidency to intimidate the governors of the various states, seek to impose a state of emergency or declare such states as a ‘no-fly zone.’

“It is even more worrisome that the Muhammadu Buhari presidency will gloss over Kaduna, Niger and Mr. President’s home state of Katsina, where killings, kidnapping and abduction have become a daily routine, only to be contemplating an emergency situation in Zamfara.

“The PDP counsels that rather than this selective approach to fighting banditry, terrorism and kidnapping, the Muhammadu Buhari presidency should go back to the drawing board and adopt a holistic approach to quell the prevailing insecurity in our nation.

“Our party will therefore not allow the Muhammadu Buhari presidency to tag and intimidate Governor Bello Matawalle for seeking to find solutions to a very depressing situation.

“Consequently, the PDP hereby directs Governor Bello Matawalle to stop his intervention approach as our party charges Nigerians to hold President Muhammadu Buhari and his administration directly responsible for any further assault or killing of innocent citizens in Zamfara State.

“In doing this, the PDP charges President Muhammadu Buhari to be mindful of the type of advice he receives from his officials in the security circle on this Zamfara security concerns, especially as there are allegations of hidden interest among his officials.”

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