Nigeria: Makarfi Blames Govt Over Intimidation, Doubts Capacity to Hold 2019 Polls

Ayodele Fayose, Ekiti State Governor - A photograph showing Ekiti State Governor, Chief Ayodele Fayose on the ground after he was attacked with tear gas and beaten by security operatives

Kaduna — Former National Chairman of the People's Democratic Party (PDP), Senator Ahmed Makarfi, has blamed Governor Ayodele Fayose's attack on the Federal Government.He warned that the conduct of Ekiti Governorship polls would determine the outcome of the 2019 general elections in the country.

According to him, the deployment of 30,000 armed security personnel in the state was a signal that the elections may not be free and fair.Makarfi also blamed President Muhammadu Buhari for systematically destroying the tenants of democracy in Nigeria.

In a statement yesterday by his spokesman, Mukthar Sirajo, he said: "Makarfi is appalled by the news of assault of the governor and his deputy, Prof. Kolapo Olusola, who is the PDP's candidate for the election.He condemned "this brazen infringement on the individual and collective rights of the people, as enshrined in the country's Constitution.

"Makarfi considers the assault not only on Fayose and the PDP, but also a knife through the heart of the nation's democracy, by an agency of state that is funded to protect those rights amongst other functions."

Makarfi, a former governor of Kaduna State lamented: "these signals are ominous and portend a tendency towards desperation and the proclivity to deploy instruments of state towards the attainment of a predetermined agenda."

The statement further stressed: "situations such as this bring into sharper focus, Makarfi's arguments and appeals, with respect to restructuring the country."He stressed that as we consider restructuring the country, we should also think of doing same to our institutions in such a way that they are insulated from political control.

This, he, said was necessary to enable them "serve the state, as opposed to serving political leaders of the time, which is what obtains at the moment."Makarfi appealed to the police and other security agencies to operate above the fray to inspire the confidence of all.He warned that not only Nigerians, but also the entire world is watching with interest, to see how situations unfold as the days go by.

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