The All Progressives Congress (APC) has cautioned the candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the just-concluded Kogi State governorship election, Senator Dino Melaye and his counterpart in the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Murtala Ajaka, against inflaming passion and inciting strife in the State.
APC said their actions and utterances following their dismal performance in the election were charging the atmosphere for escalation of violence in the Confluence State.
The National Publicity Secretary of APC, Felix Morka, gave the warning at a press conference in Abuja on Thursday.
Morka said that while the duo has refused to challenge the outcome of the poll in the court of law, which the APC candidate, Usman Ododo, won, they have continued to instigate bad blood in Kogi State.
He said: “The candidate of the PDP, Dino Melaye, has emphatically and publicly declared his decision not to challenge the outcome of the election, according to him, because he has no confidence in the judiciary to fairly adjudicate any dispute he may bring forward.
“On his part, the candidate of the SDP, Murtala Ajaka, stated, on national television, that he will not challenge the election, for reasons similar to that advanced by his opposition counterpart, Dino, that has no confidence in the judiciary, especially as INEC will be a potential witness in the case to justify the outcome of the election.
“In a sudden u-turn, Ajaka, is now reported to have changed his mind and now intends to bring a petition before the Election Petition Tribunal, even though, it appears that he is out of time to validly do so. However, we will leave that for determination by the courts.”
The APC Spokesperson condemned the reported attack against the Secretary of the Election Tribunal, Mike Umar David, on Monday, December 4, 2023 “in very spurious circumstances”, linking it to the opposition.
“The SDP clearly has a lot of explaining to do regarding this incident. Their utterances and actions, prior to, and since, that incident, betray suspicious special knowledge of the incident.
“Prior to Monday’s incident involving the Tribunal’s Secretary, the residence of the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Dr. Gabriel Hale Longpet, was also attacked on Friday, December 1, 2023 by armed hoodlums.
“These and other acts of violence in Kogi state are barbaric, undemocratic and unacceptable. The people of Kogi State deserve to live in peace and security. These sponsored and senseless acts of violence must stop.
“We note and welcome the statement by the Kogi Police Command of an ongoing investigation of the alleged attack on the Secretary to the Election Tribunal and the Resident Electoral Commissioner. We urge the Police to do so thoroughly and expeditiously, and to bring the perpetrators and their sponsors to justice,” he added.