The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Ondo State has accused Gov. Rotimi Akeredolu of using the personnel of Operation Amotekun to scuttle the All Progressives Congress (APC) chairmanship primaries in Owo Local Government area.
This was contained in a statement made available to newsmen in Akure on Saturday by the party’s Director of Media and Publicity, Zadok Akintoye.
However, in a swift reaction, the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Media, Mr Ojo Oyewamide, described the allegation as false.
He said that the PDP was ‘very unkind and mindless’ to have alluded to the use of Operation Amotekun that had yet to take off by APC to scuttle its own chairmanship primaries.
“With this, you can easily identify a lazy set of Nigerians, with due respect to our President, Muhammadu Buhari. This is lazy opposition at work.
“How can an opposition party be so busy and concerned with an issue that does not affect it to the extent of hatching a media spin to depict an imaginary picture of the use of Operation Amotekun by the governor to scuttle the chairmanship primaries?
“It is pertinent to reiterate that Gov. Akeredolu had, weeks before the exercise, pointedly told APC stakeholders that he would neither impose nor interfere in the process that was intended to produce candidates for the forthcoming local government election in the state,” he said.
The PDP alleged that the just-concluded APC chairmanship primaries in Owo was scuttled due to the rejection of the governor’s anointed candidate by the majority of party members in the council area.
“PDP, as a big and popular party in the state, is deeply concerned over the alleged use of Amotekun to scuttle the party primaries in Owo local government, as witnessed by members of the APC who reported this.
“Such an action, if true, spells huge danger for the South-West and our collective desire to ensure that we have a security system that protects our people without political affiliation and partisan inclinations,” Akintoye said.
The PDP spokesman called on the South-West governors to immediately probe the deployment of regional security operatives in an election matter.
“We also will like to demand an immediate investigation into the deployment of these operatives and demand that those involved in this act be fired and prosecuted accordingly.
“We put the Akeredolu-led APC government on notice that any deployment of Amotekun operatives in any election will be the beginning of the failure of that widely-accepted initiative and it shall be on record for future generations to judge.
“As a party, we will not fold our arms in the desire to ensure that our democracy succeeds and will resist any attempt by Akeredolu and his party to scuttle what we have tirelessly worked for.
“We also demand that the Development Agenda for Western Nigeria (DAWN) Commission explain to the citizens of the South-West why Amotekun operatives were allowed to be deployed by the Ondo State APC without recourse to the laid down procedures.
“The commission should also be deeply concerned that this allegation seemingly justifies the rumour that the APC in Ondo state has been recruiting its party members and apologists into this security initiative for a clandestine purpose, as seen in this Owo episode,” he said.