The Nigerian Human Rights Community, (NHRC) has accused the Ekiti State
Governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose, of plotting to disrupt the declaration
rally of a member of the All Progressive Congress, (APC), Senator
Babafemi Ojudu, which has been scheduled for Friday 9 March 2018.
The group alleged that Mr Fayose’s agents plan to remove hundreds of
posters and billboards already installed for this purpose.
In a statement on Thursday, the NHRC, a coalition of 135 civil society
groups said there were complaints that Mr Fayose was planning to use his
thugs to disrupt the rally, starting with the defacing of the billboards
carrying the campaign pictures and messages of Senator Ojudu.
We should be glad to see Mr Fayose prove these allegations wrong,” the
“Ahead of these reports that smack of intolerance, Mr Fayose, we were
informed, has already deployed his thugs to either deface or totally
remove Senator Ojudu’s billboards and burn them to ashes.
We caution Mr Fayose to exercise restraints and tolerance, since nobody
has tampered with any of the campaign materials he has either pasted or
erected on the streets of Ado or its environs campaigning for his
deputy, Prof. Eleka to succeed him.
The rules guiding campaigns recognises plurality of opinions. We have
been informed that Mr Fayose is already intimidated by the campaign
strategy of Senator Ojudu. We think the solution is not to deploy
violence. This will be like opening another ugly chapter in the history
of Ekiti, a state that has seen so much political violence and state
motivated killings in the past” the statement signed by Samuel Adenuga,
the group’s Assistant General Secretary stated.
According to the NHRC, the July election is not only of interest to
Ekiti people, it is of greater interests to the international community.
“The July election will signal what pattern the 2019 elections may
follow. Mr Fayose, the Chief Security Officer of Ekiti state is in a
position to determine what Ekiti people should expect in July, either a
civil conduct or a state of violence and blood-letting.
The group added: “Tolerance is important to political transition. The
signals from Ekiti are not impressive. Our office has been inundated
with trusted information that Mr Fayose is plotting to foment discourse
by forcefully removing the posters of his opponents and also planning to
disrupt their rallies. We have been informed that he has concluded plans
to remove Senator Ojudu’s billboards and also invade his rally with
thugs. This is completely in bad taste. The entire human rights
community in Nigeria will hold Mr Fayose personally responsible for any incidence that may undermine basic democratic rules in Ekiti State.”