Desperation is now the name of the game in Anambra State as the clock ticks for the November 16 governorship election with the discovery of a hideout in Awka, the state capital, where security agents’ uniforms were being allegedly secretly sewn.
The hideout was said to have been uncovered two days ago by two members of the public.
The fake uniforms found in the place were said to include those of the police, Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).
Director General of the Ngige Campaign Organisation, George Muoghalu, said of the strange find: “We wish to draw your attention to an intelligence report which revealed many of these evil plots. You will recall that less than two weeks ago it was reported in the media that the Deputy Inspector General of Police Operations, Mr. Lar, raised an alarm that some candidates were sewing police, NYSC and Civil Defence uniforms with the intent to unleash mayhem and disrupt the election.
“Senator Chris Ngige Campaign Organisation can further confirm that indeed it is true and in fact fake corpers, fake policemen and fake Civil Defence officials are being imported into Anambra State and camped in certain locations.
“We are equally aware that the aim of this grand design is to use these fake law enforcement officers to unleash mayhem in specific areas where Senator Chris Ngigie is particularly very strong and victory–bound.
“Some of the areas targeted by these desperate politicians are Idemili North and South Local Governments where Dr. Chris Ngigie hails from, Ogbaru Local Government, Onitsha North and South and Nnewi North Local Government Areas, and some other places.”
Ngige is the governorship candidate of All Progressives Party (APC) for the Saturday poll.
But the state Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO), Emeka Chukwuemeka, told Daily Independent that the use of fake uniforms cannot work in the election process.
He added that the police command has put measures in place to identify and arrest people with fake uniforms.
Chukwuemeka also said with the number of policemen that would be deployed to Anambra State it would be difficult for any impostor to have his way on the election day.
Ngige’s campaign chief, Muoghalu, also spoke on the Adoration Ground tragedy that claimed about 25 lives at Uke two weeks ago, saying the video clips which Governor Peter Obi and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) National Chairman, Victor Umeh, claimed had supporters of Ngige carrying posters on night of the incident “has shown that no such thing happened and that the duo lied.”
“Yes indeed their infamous claim has turned out to be a blatant lie, as the video of that tragic and unfortunate black night has clearly shown that there were no groups of Ngige supporters positioned anywhere at the Adoration Ground, wearing his campaign uniforms, carrying his posters or waving brooms as they claimed.
“What we have seen in the video as we told you last week remains spontaneous booing and general disapproval by the worshippers against Governor Obi’s insistence to turn their prayer gathering into a campaign rally for his lapdog, Willie Obiano.
“The video of the Adoration Night where the APGA train campaigned is now available for whoever cares to view it and be the judge.
“And as we also said last week, Anambra people should hold Governor Peter Obi, Chief Victor Umeh and APGA candidate, Chief Willie Obiano, responsible for the avoidable deaths of these innocent ones who had gone to the Ebube Muonso Adoration to seek the face of God over their suffering from APGA mis-governance and mismanagement of the Anambra State resources,” Muoghalu added.
The national leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) also on Monday accused those it described as desperate politicians within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and APGA of plotting to rig Saturday’s governorship election in Anambra State.
An it warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) not to allow itself to be used to carry out such plan.
In a statement by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, the party listed some of the rigging strategies as disenfranchisement of voters, especially in opposition strongholds; massive thumb-printing of ballot papers in secret locations; sloppy accreditation process; late or non-delivery of voting materials to opposition strongholds and the use of the police and other security agencies to intimidate voters.
The party described the strategies as “old tricks which INEC should be very well aware of, if indeed the electoral body is keen on delivering a free, fair and transparent elections on Saturday”.
‘’There are plans to use several secret locations, including Ogidi, for massive ballot paper thumb-printing, and it is an open secret that some of these locations are being fortified for secrecy.
“Plans are also afoot to foist a sloppy accreditation exercise on voters by muddling up names and photographs of voters in such a way that most voters will be disenfranchised.
‘’Also, areas where the APC candidate is strongest will either be starved of voting materials or will not even receive such materials at all, while the police – which is fast becoming the armed wing of the PDP – as well as other security agents will be used to harass and intimidate voters.
‘’These are some of the evil strategies which the riggers are counting upon on Saturday. This is the same game plan that the PDP used to rig the Delta Central senatorial election last month, with the collusion of some dirty INEC officials,’’ APC said.
It warned, however, that the people of Anambra will not allow a replay of such electoral heist and unmitigated brigandage, neither will the APC condone any action that will not ensure a level playing field for all candidates at the poll.
The party also warned INEC, the police and other security forces to restrict themselves to their constitutional roles during the election, instead of working in cahoots with do-or-die politicians.
‘’We will expose, challenge and shame all those who are bent on ruining the forthcoming elections in Anambra, using our own counter-measures,” APC added.
Meanwhile, a group, Anambra North People’s Congress (ANPC), has endorsed APGA candidate, Willie Obiano, as the candidate that will guarantee a dignified future for people of the state.
In a statement in Abuja on Monday ANPC President Anthony Okeke, stated: “It is with justifiable pride and honour that we endorse Willie Obiano to build on the sound foundations Governor Peter Obi laid for rapid, integrated and accelerated socio-economic development of Anambra State.”