The ruling People Democratic Party (PDP) and its opposition All Progressive Party (APC) in Ekiti State on Saturday exchanged verbal invectives over attack on Mr. Jackson Adebayo, the state’s PDP Publicity Secretary.
Mr. Adebayo said he was on Friday night attacked by three armed men in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
Narrating his experience on Saturday after receiving treatment at a private hospital, Jackson, who had his head heavily bandaged and looked very tired, said his assailants had hit his head with their guns severally adding that he was accosted by three armed men on a motorbike at Federal Housing Estate area of the town at about 9pm on Friday.
“I was going for a vigil in the church when three armed men on a motorbike accosted me. Two of them came down with their guns and started shooting sporadically. They seized me and hit my head against the asphalt on the road and the man on the bike ordered them to shoot me, but the men said they should leave me.”
Asked what he suspected the assailants to be, whether they were armed robbers or thugs, Adebayo said he suspected it was a political attack, alleging that he had got threats to his life earlier from suspected thugs of a major rival party in the state.
“I wouldn’t describe it as a robbery case because apart from my phone and tablet that they took, the money they found when they ransacked my pockets, was returned.
Few days ago, I had issued a press release on the purported trip of Mrs Aisha Buhari to America on behalf of our party and I started receiving threat calls on my phones.
“The callers were threatening me to leave the woman alone and few day later, this happened. We are in a democracy and we have the right to speak as a party.
“If anybody thinks by engaging in violence they can silence us and our party, they are mistaken. We are for the people and the voice of the people is the voice of God,” he said.
Commenting on the development, the State Chairman of PDP, Mr. Gboyega Oguntuase, accused the opposition APC of formenting violence in the state, alleging that: “APC are known for eliminating those against them. “They killed no fewer than 12 people when they were in government here. From Chief Awolumate who was killed in Omuo-Ekiti, to Ayo Jeje and
Juliana Adewumi who were killed in Erijiyan. They also killed Foluso Ogundare in Emure-Ekiti to Chief Omolafe Aderiye that they killed in Ado-Ekiti, their stock in trade is murder of opposition figures.
“Since they have started to go for my executive and party members, we are calling on the people of the state and God to save us from their hands.
“They have failed to alleviate the economic woes in Nigeria and as far as we concerned, we are committed to our goal of making Ekiti a better place to live in and we are for peace,” he said.
But reacting to the Oguntuase’s allegation, Ekiti APC Publicity Secretary, Taiwo Olatunbosun, said: “I don’t want to join issues with Adebayo. But we should let him realize that night is not what such a person like him should be involved in. Is it president Buhari or his wife , Aishat that would send hoodlums to attack him?
“He is taking politics to a ridiculous and embarrassing level. If gov Fayose and the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP are walking on the streets nobody would attack them.
” Let Jackson stop night crawling. That is not an issue that he should politicize. We have to sympathize with him, we as a party are not identified with violence and we’ll not be violent with the opposition. He’s just trying to attract attention to himself.
“If it is necessary, we may ask that Gov. Fayose should please to apply the security vote he collects every month to assist security agencies in the state to manage the security situation of the state.
“I’ll advise Adebayo to report the incident to security agencies to investigate. He should not drag us into what we know nothing about. President Buhari and his wife would not do such a thing, ” he said.
Also confirming that Adebayo had reported the alleged attack to the police, Ekiti State Police Public Relations Officer, (PPRO), Mr. Alberto Adeyemi, said: “Mr. Jackson Adebayo has reported the alleged attack to the police, but we are still investigating the incident.”