Police in Ondo state on Sunday confirmed the arrest of seven persons suspected to be political thugs in Ifon, in Ose Local Government Area of the state, with local arms in a Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) branded vehicle.
The State Police Public Relations Officer (PPRO) Mr. Tee- Leo Ikoro, who confirmed this said the operations took place over the weekend when the seven suspects were arrested by detectives from the state police command.
He said the weapons were recovered during a special raid by the police in the local government areas and the seven hoodlums were arrested.
Ikoro said “it is correct, the information is correct. We are investigating this but the hoodlums are arrested with a branded vehicle purportedly using the name of PDP.
“But you know this is political period, anything can happen but our investigation will prove at the end of the day if they are member of PDP or not. Seven of them are arrested with local arms”
But in their swift reaction, while the Akeredolu Campaign Organisation, expressed shock over the arrest of the hoodlums with guns in PDP vehicle, the Eyitayo Jegede campaign group said it is an affirmation of the previous alarm and warnings on the criminal arms build-up by the ruling party to implicate the opposition party in the state.
In a statement signed by Gbenga Akinmoyo on behalf of Eyitayo Jegede campaign group, who “the general public has been alerted long before now as to the sinister plans being hatched by the ruling APC in Ondo State to adorn political thugs in PDP branded materials to unleash mayhem on itself and the gathering of other political parties with the sole intention of putting the blame on the PDP.
“The APC who boasted of militancy, arms and ammunition through one of their party chieftains and unleashed unprovoked mayhem on the PDP a few days ago in a botched assassination attempt on the PDP governorship candidate have moved to the next scene of the unfolding drama.
“The information of the arrest of some hoodlums in branded vehicles wearing PDP logo at Ifon in Ose LG, whilst our campaign train is due to make a stop in the town, that is presently circulating on Social Media, is nothing but an attempt by the APC to make good its evil plans.
“While appreciating the security agencies for their vigilance in averting a needless mayhem, we urge the general public to remain focused and not fall for the antics of the ruling APC who are determined to draw us into unproductive arguments that can distract us from those issues that border on the welfare of our people and failure of the APC government in addressing them.
Similarly, Olabode Richard Olatunde, Spokesperson, Akeredolu Campaign Organisation, said “We are again shocked and bewildered by this show of shame by the major opposition party in the state, which has once again been caught napping in a web of violence and thuggery.
“We are relieved that the Police was able to size the sophisticated guns, live cartridges and machetes which could have been used to cut the lives of the innocent people of the state short on the alter of politics.
“While we commend the Police authority for its gallantry efforts at arresting these hoodlums,we condemn this act in strong terms and call for more investigation into the PDP Campaign activities.
“This is coming despite several appeals for politicians to allow peace reign before, during and after the governorship election, making one to ask if the PDP and thuggery are siamese twins.
“This clearly attests to the fact that the PDP, like the proverbial leopard, will never change its spots, with the party engrossed in the use of thuggery to curry electoral victory, even when the people have clearly rejected it.
“We wonder if the PDP sees the election as a war or an electoral contest for the seat of the State Governor.
“We insist that this does not only constitute danger to our democracy and credible electoral process, but the lives of people, that the party claims it is out to serve”
But the police Spokesman however, said the command would unravel those behind the ungodly acts, urging political thugs to stay away from the state.
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