EDO State chapter of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has accused the state government of planning to use its vigilante group, Neighbourhood Watch, to rig the April 20, local government elections in the state.
Reacting, however, Edo State Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr. Louis Odion, denied the allegation. He accused PDP of planning to buy votes with public funds from the national treasury.
State Chairman of PDP, Chief Dan Orbih, during a meeting in Auchi, Estako West Local Government Area, said that the party had uncovered a plot by the state government to buy uniforms and arms for Neighbourhood Watch to use during the elections.
He said: “PDP has uncovered a plot by the Adams Oshiomhole-led ACN government to deploy members of the state’s vigilante group, Neighbourhood Watch, to intimidate, harass and obstruct members of PDP from casting their votes during the forthcoming elections. To this end, our informant also disclosed that the state government had bought arms and ammunition for the group to be used on the election day.
“Following the disclosure of this dangerous plot, PDP has decided to write a strongly worded letter to Edo State Commissioner of Police, informing him about the plot. Copies of the letter will be forwarded to the Inspector-General of Police and Assistant Inspector-General of Police, Zone 5, for appropriate action.”
But reacting, Odion, said: “I really need to pity Orbih. Now, he says Oshiomhole will use the Neighbourhood Watch to rig the coming elections. But if one may ask, did Oshiomhole need them to win the 18 councils in the governorship poll of July 14, last year when Orbih and his master, Chief Tony Anenih, lost woefully? Of course, the answer is no. You can then see the fallacy in Orbih’s argument.”