Barely two days to the conduct of the Governorship and State Assembly elections, the gubernatorial candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Gombe state, Usman Bayero-Nafada has alerted that the opposition All Progressive Congress, APC, in the state was planning to use the Special Anti-Robbery Squad, SARS, against his party.
Mr Bayero-Nafada issued the alert in a press statement signed by Dahiru Hassan Kera, Chairman Media and Publicity Committee of the PDP Campaign Council in the state, and made available to newsmen in Gombe on Wednesday evening.
According to the Statement, the APC, through the backing of the Federal Government, were planning to use security agencies to intimidate, harass and even arrest their members with the intension of creating fear and putting the PDP at a disadvantaged position during the election.
The governorship candidate alleged that, “In Gombe State, SARs officials have been arresting our party men and we are privy to an information that plans have been concluded to use the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in addition to what was used before to clamp down on PDP members during this forth-coming elections”.
The Statement reads, “As the 2019 Governorship and State House of Assembly elections gets closer, I want to commend our supporters and the entire people of Gombe State for their resilience and standing by us throughout our match to develop our darling State to our desired status and for generation yet unborn.
“It is in the light of this, that I want to draw the attention of our people and all those that mean well for our State of a clandestine move to infiltrate Gombe State with illegal mercenaries with the intention of thwarting the will of the people during the Governorship and State Assembly elections on Saturday 9th March, 2019.
“It will be recalled that the opposition All Progressive Congress (APC) in the State, aided by illegally deployed security agents have intimidated, harassed and even arrested some of our strong members just to weaken our support before the Presidential and National Assembly election.
“We are privy to an information that, plans have been concluded to use the Special Anti-Robbery Squad (SARS) in addition to what was used before to clamp down on PDP members during this forth-coming elections.
“Those who want to use security agencies to rob us of our mandate should have a rethink because our people are fully prepared to exercise their franchise and equally protect their mandate.
“We’ve noticed same during the last election where APC stalwarts were moving from one local government to another with full armed security men. We are not ready to accept that during the upcoming polls,” the Statement said.
Mr Bayero-Nafada, therefore, called on all the security agents in the state to be neutral and not to allow themselves to be used by the desperate politicians to help them rig election against the popular wish of the people of Gombe State.
However, when contacted the Police Public Relations Officer of the Command, Mary Malum, described the allegation as untrue, saying: “Nobody is planning to use the police for anything. How can the APC use the police?”
According to her, the command had already received additional deployment of personnel to ensure adequate security in the nook and cranny of the state.
“So, we are assuring the general public of adequate security during and after the governorship and State Assembly elections in the state,” she added.