Members and supporters of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State yesterday protested in Ilorin, the state capital, the recent redeployment of Kayode Egbetokun as the police commissioner.
They took the peaceful protest from the party’s secretariat at Flower Garden to the Government House, the Department of State Services (DSS) office and terminated it at the police headquarters on Ahmadu Bello Way.
The protesters said they were angry at the posting Egbetokun to the state ahead of the general elections.
The protesters, led by PDP’s State Youth Leader, Prince Haliru Dantsoho, carried placards with various inscriptions.
They urged Inspector General of Police (IGP) Mohammed Adamu and President Muhammadu Buhari to reverse the decision.
Some of the placards read: “CP Kayode must go”; “Kwarans totally reject an APC commissioner” and “Kwara cannot be annexed to Lagos.”
Dantoso, who said the residents had never protested against deployment of any police commissioner, added that Egbetokun allegedly posed a threat to peace in the state.
He said: “Egbetokun was one-time Chief Security Officer (CSO) to APC Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu. Also, he was spontaneously rejected by people of Lagos when he was posted there recently and the deployment was reversed by acting IGP Mohammed Adamu.
“Unfortunately, the same man, who parades himself as an APC member, has now been posted to Kwara State. It’s a ploy to further intimidate the opposition.
“You recall how members of opposition were arrested and harassed during the by-election into Ekiti Oke Ero Isin Irepodun Federal Constituency recently. So, with the deployment of Egbetokun, free, fair and credible elections cannot be guaranteed.
“It’s on this note we frown at the deployment, calling on the IGP to immediately redeploy him to another state of their wish but not Kwara State. Kwara has been a peaceful state of harmony since. We don’t want anything that will affect the peace and harmony we’ve been enjoying.”
The Kwara State All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, has accused the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state of planning to unleash violence on the opposition.
He urged the International Criminal Court (ICC) to focus attention on the state.
In a statement in Ilorin, the state capital, Abdulrazaq hailed the ICC for its latest warning against violence in the forthcoming polls.
He said: “We welcome the latest appeal and warnings by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on the upcoming Nigerian elections.”
Abdulrazaq said there is need to pay attention to political development in the state.
“We believe elections should not be a do-or-die affair but should be about selling one’s ideas to the electorate in an atmosphere devoid of violence or threat of same or intimidation.
“We have reasons to call on the ICC to especially turn its radar on Kwara State where the discredited political dynasty has consistently used violence to suppress the opposition. The recent rise in political violence, including attacks on my person and supporters and unabated destruction of our billboards, is instructive.
“We, therefore, invite the ICC to monitor the processes leading to the elections in Kwara State. My supporters and I hereby formally pledge peaceful campaign and conduct before, during and after the elections.
“We urge the people of Kwara to shun violence in all forms and discourage our youths from violence or anything that could disturb public peace.”