Published On: Fri, Aug 24th, 2018

Abia: Activist condemns attack on Otti’s supporters, says govt. desperate because it has failed


Rights activist and former President of Nigeria Bar Association (NBA), Ikeja branch, Mr. Monday Ubani, has condemned Tuesday’s attack on supporters of Dr. Alex Otti, a governorship aspirant in Abia State under the platform of the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) at Obingwa Local Government Area of the state by thugs suspected to be loyal to the state government, noting that attacking political opponents have become a dangerous pattern.


Ubani who registered his displeasure over the development in a chat with BH, accused the state government of being desperate because it had failed the people of Abia State.

He wondered why a local government chairman should prevent an opposition party from holding rallies when there is freedom of association as enshrined in the country’s constitution.

“Why would a local government chairman deny a rival political party a platform to campaign? What are you afraid of? If you perform well, why would you be afraid of your opponents?” he queried. “You allow them space to campaign because there must be opposition. But in Abia, if you express any contrary views, they will track you. All the radio stations sing praises of the government in power.

“I’m not surprised that it happened, it’s been like that. When you are in opposition, it’s God that protects you. What they do sometimes is that from your village, they will tell the traditional rulers to ask you to go on exile because you are in opposition. It’s as bad as that in Abia.

“The politicians have nothing to offer so what they do is that they blackmail. If you belong to a different political party, especially if you are not a member of PDP, a PDP member will not even patronise you if you have products you are selling. They brand everyone in Abia as an enemy. It has been there since the time of Orji Uzo Kalu till date.”

Ubani noted that from time to time, opposition voices have been eliminated in the state, while regretting that the youths have been impoverished such that they have become willing tools in the hands of politicians who use them as hit men for peanuts.

“If you don’t even take time, they will eliminate you because they don’t perform. So if anyone comes with a better promise, they feel threatened. What they do is to eliminate you. That’s why the state is flowing with blood. The hands of these politicians are not clean,” he said.

“Nothing is happening there. Those boys have nothing doing, so they just tell them to go and kill this person. And since they have nothing doing, they have no job; they don’t create jobs for them, they have nothing to do other than relying on those crumbs that fall from the table of the politicians.

“They breed very dangerous boys; boys who smoke ‘igbo’ and do all manner of evil. They are after lives, especially if you come and say you want to contest, they come after you.”

It would be recalled that on Tuesday, thugs said to be accompanying the chairman of Obingwa LGA, Mr. Hanson Amaechi, who was allegedly acting on the instructions of the state government, locked and condoned off the National Institute of Nigerian Languages, Obingwa, where APGA supporters of Dr. Otti had planned to welcome defectors from other political parties and subsequently attacked them with stones and sundry weapons.

Dr. Otti

Meanwhile, the Director General of Dr. Otti Campaign Organisation, Mr. Max Nduaguibe has vowed that the party will campaign in Obingwa, even if it must adopt a different approach, lamenting that the introduction of violence in the state’s politics was dangerous.

“Abia State belongs to us all,” he said at a press conference. “I am of the Ngwa extraction. I have contested for governorship in the state before. I was allowed to campaign in all the 17 local governments and I tell you, nothing has changed.

“Introduction of violence in our political arena is dangerous. This is democracy. Let’s create the environment for all to operate. As per campaigning in Obingwa, we will but this time, differently.”

He alleged that the local government chairman told him clearly that he was acting on the instructions of the state government and that he was to make sure that APGA does not hold rallies in Obingwa, the home of the incumbent governor, Dr. Okezie Ikpeazu.

“Hanson confronted me physically. He knew me. He told me that he is under authority to prevent the gathering of APGA anywhere in Obingwa.”

When contacted however, Mr. Enyinnaya Appolos, the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Ikpeazu, said he was not in a position to respond to APGA’s allegations, but that the state’s chapter of the PDP had denied the allegations.

Dr. Ikpeazu, Abia governor

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