Yerima Shettima

The Arewa Youth Consultative Forum has sounded a note of warning to the All Progressives Congress and President Muhammadu Buhari to look inwards and concentrate on their party issues and leave the Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose, to concentrate on the governance of his state.

This position was stated by the President of the group, Alhaji Yerima Shettima, in a statement in Kaduna on Friday.

Shettima said: “From the series of street protests in support of Fayose, it is evident that the impunity against the governor was very unpopular. It held even in Abuja, the capital if Nigeria. Most importantly one of these protests held in Katsina State two days ago.

“For this to have happened at the President’s immediate constituency, it was signal that everything was wrong with the APC and police treatment of governor Fayose.”

The group said it had been following with keen interest the brazen abuse of democratic ethics and principles in Ekiti State through the use force against Fayose, declaring: “It is a smear on decorum and an international embarrassment for a serving governor elected by millions of the poor people on Ekiti to be subjected to physical attack. We condemn this Gestapo style in totality.

“We are disappointed that at this stage of our national democratic history there are persons in uniform ready to intimidate people, including the Chief Security Officer of a State in broad daylight, just to please their paymasters. This is an uncivilized conduct, an attack on the Rule of Law and therefore reprehensible.

“We deplore this level of desperation by the ruling APC over an election in just one State out of 36 States in the Federation, while we are approaching nationwide elections in 2019.

“As a people who identify with the promotion of democratic governance in Nigeria, we reject this use of primitive means of impunity and open manipulation of a simple electoral process.

“We wish to issue the timely warning that the attempt to emasculate opposition parties in Ekiti State at the moment has far-reaching implications for the forthcoming 2019 elections and our democratic future. This is therefore objectionable in totality.”

The Arewa youth also announced that as monitors of the nation’s democratic development, they are watching very closely all the happenings ahead of the Saturday governorship election in Ekiti State and will support any effort to ensure that the people’s votes count.

The statement said: “Finally we call on all stakeholders in the forthcoming Ekiti elections to ensure that the millions of voters in the State enjoy the freedom to vote for the candidates of their choice, without any form of intimidation.

“We hope our message gets across to all stakeholders including the security agents and all those who call the shots in the ruling APC. Enough of this unacceptable political brigandage.”

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