Operatives of the Nigeria Police Force have arrested the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party for Kwara South Senatorial District, Senator Rafiu Ibrahim.
The arrest of the candidate was contained in a statement made available to The Eagle Online by the PDP in the wee hours of Friday.
The statement, signed by the Chairman, PDP Kwara South Youth Forum, Hon. Muideen Abdulrahman, said it was the beginning of “a systemic clampdown” on leaders of the party in Kwara State as Ibrahim was forcefully taken away on Thursday evening.
The All Progressives Congress had accused Ibrahim of being the mastermind of the attack on the party’s candidate for Kwara South Senatorial District, Lola Ashiru, on Friday night.
The attack, in Ojoku area of the senatorial district, left two persons dead and several others injured.
Disagreeing with the arrest of Ibrahim, the incumbent senator for the area, Abdulrahman said further in the statement: “Tonight’s action by the Police is a clear indication that Officers of the Nigerian Police Force have decided to take sides against the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Kwara State and across the nation, as the reasoning behind Senator Ibrahim’s arrest is currently unknown, and reminiscent of last year’s arrest of Kwara PDP leaders in Kwara South constituency during the bye-election.
“As at the time of this story, Lola Ashiru, the candidate of the APC for the Kwara South Senatorial District, was holding a late-night rally, where he celebrated the arrest of Senator Ibrahim stating that the party had the ‘full support of the Government at the center.”
“We, the youths of Kwara South Constituency, hereby call on the international community, specifically, observers who have come to witness the February 23rd election, to take note of the partisan and irresponsible antics of the Nigerian Police Force.
“We also call on all well-meaning Nigerians to join us to call for the release of Distinguished Senator Rafiu Ibrahim, who is known as a peace-loving and highly-performing legislator who always puts the needs of his constituents first and foremost.
“Additionally, we call on the Acting Inspector General of Police, Mohammed Abubakar Adamu, to cease and desist from utilising institutions of state from harassing leading political figures in our state. Elections are not do or die affairs, hence, all candidates should be free to test their popularity at the polls without fear of intimidation by men of the Nigerian Police who are sworn to ‘serve and protect’ all citizens irrespective of their party affiliation.”