In a press release dated December 8, 2023, Faruk Adejoh-Audu, the Spokesman for the Muri/Sam Gubernatorial Campaign Council of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), accused Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello of orchestrating a plan to deploy thugs wearing SDP uniforms to instigate chaos in Abuja and Lokoja.
According to the statement, the SDP claims that miscreants commissioned by Governor Bello are distributing thousands of T-shirts bearing the image of their candidate, Alhaji Muritala Yakubu Ajaka, and the party logo to rented thugs.
These individuals are allegedly set to engage in violent activities, including attacking motorists and destroying property in both cities.
The SDP strongly condemned what they perceive as the Governor’s descent into criminality, questioning why an elected official would resort to violence and mass impersonation.
The party accused Governor Bello of funding violence, pointing to recent attacks on democratic institutions and their custodians in Kogi State.
The statement further alleges that Governor Bello, angered by the relocation of the Governorship Election Petitions Tribunal to Abuja, is now importing violent thugs to the federal capital to blame the SDP for any ensuing chaos.
In response, the SDP disowns these alleged criminals and calls on the Nigerian Police Force and the Directorate of State Security to use maximum force to contain the situation.
The party asserts that this is not the first time Governor Bello has been involved in such actions, citing a previous incident where thugs impersonating SDP members disrupted the inspection of election materials.
The SDP warns that it will seek legal redress against anyone who refers to these thugs as party members, emphasizing that they are not organizing any protests or demonstrations.
The party urges authorities to apprehend anyone in SDP paraphernalia engaging in criminal activities during this period, considering them mercenaries rented to impersonate SDP members and cause mayhem.