Former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) and the governorship candidate of the defunct Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in Ondo State in the 2013 elections, Mr. Rotimi Akeredolu (SAN), has condemned in strong terms, acts considered as desperation on the part of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Akeredolu, while reacting to the last Monday advertorial placed in some national dailies demeaning the person of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential candidate, General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), tagged ‘Nigerians Be Warned – Choose Between Life and Death,’ by the Ekiti State Governor, Mr. Ayodele Fayose, said such acts was provocative and an exhibition of desperation ahead of the general election coming up next month.
While condemning Fayose for acting in manners that are unbecoming of a governor of a state, Akeredolu called on Nigerians to condemn the act by the governor, saying rather than resort to blackmail and person attacks, Nigerians expect public office seekers to address the germane issues affecting Nigeria and its people.
“The base and uncouth verbiage does not befit anyone occupying the exalted office of the governor of a state. The mere suggestion of the possibility of Buhari meeting a grim end if elected should not be taken lightly. Fayose must be made to explain what he means and the information that he possesses that other Nigerians may need to know.
“Fayose’s reference to former Heads of State who died in office is instructive. The suggestion that Buhari will die in office if elected must not be treated with levity. This is the time when all lovers of peace in this country must come out to defend her interest. The Directorate of State Security (DSS) should cast aside the embarrassing garb of undisguised partisanship and avail itself of the benefits derivable from the ‘clairvoyant’ governor. He should be asked to explain to the whole world what he knows that is shielded from the rest of us.”
He said: “The ludicrous charges bordering on his (Buhari’s) age, educational qualification, antecedents in politics and adherence to his faith as a Muslim, asinine and provocative, are regarded as permissible in politics. Not a few Nigerians believe that politicians must concentrate on the problems of insecurity, corruption, economic instability and political violence.
“No one is left in doubt that the ruling party is not ready to campaign based on socio-economic challenges facing the country in spite of its repeated avowal to do so.”
The former Ondo State Attorney-General said the widespread feeling among Nigerians is not to pay attention to abusive people who are reacting because they are losing power.
“The ruling party, PDP, through its spokespersons, continues to assail the sensibilities of Nigerians with deeds and words in its bid to hang on to power by any means, both fair and foul.
“The pervasive tendency among Nigerians favours ignoring the puerile tantrums of those who seem to find it difficult to come to terms with the reality of losing power and the privileges attendant on the exercise of same without responsibility in the last sixteen years.
“What started as a campaign to showcase the achievements of the incumbent president of the country, transited to crude abuse and downright denigration of the candidate of the main opposition party in the forthcoming presidential election, Buhari.
“The disinformation on the state of health of Buhari, the release and liberal dissemination of falsehood on the purported diagnosis for a terminal illness is however deplorable to assert the least. The latest crude assault credited to Fayose, must be condemned by all well-meaning people.
He inferred that with Fayose’s advertorial on the suitability of the APC candidate to contest the presidential election, and his warning to Nigerians to choose between life and death, he was referring to the overwhelming support currently enjoyed by Buhari in the country and the “ever-increasing likelihood of his being elected to succeed the incumbent.
He warned that anyone planning something untoward Nigerian will not succeed because “Nigerians will not accept any news of a sponsored ‘terrorist attack’ which will achieve a contrived end. The general was lucky to have escaped once. Many Nigerians lost their lives in the attack. The choice of who rules should be left to Nigerians. It is uncharitable and very rude, to be mild, for some ill-educated persons to seek to direct their betters on the best way to govern this country.”