Efforts by some All Progressives Party (APC) governors to attend the party’s mega rally in support of Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi’s re-election was frustrated on Thursday by armed security operatives who halted their movement to Ado-Ekiti, citing orders from above.
The mega rally, which was the APC final rally for the Saturday’s governorship election, took place at the newly constructed State Pavilion, in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital.
The APC governors that were prevented by the security operatives from attending the event are Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi; Rabiu Musa Kwakwaso (Kano); Aliyu Wammakko (Sokoto) and Comrade Adams Oshiomhole (Edo).
While Governor Amaechi’s plane landed at the Akure Airport, he was prevented from entering Ekiti State as he was stopped at Iju, a border town in Ondo State. He returned to Lagos by road after about five hours delay at the spot as the security operatives insisted they had orders from above to ensure he does not enter Ekiti.
The armed security operatives rebuffed entreaty from some APC chieftains who pleaded with the soldiers to allow the governor into the state to attend the rally which is within the provision of the Electoral Law.
His aircraft was, however, grounded at the Akure Airport following a ‘fresh order’ barring any plane from landing and taking off from the airport.
The aircraft conveying the duo of Governors Kwankwaso and Wammakko was prevented from landing at the Akure Airport, while Edo State Governor, Comrade Oshiomhole was prevented from taking off from the Benin Airport.
The security operatives that prevented Governor Amaechi were said to have cleared the road for the duo of Minister of State for Defence, Mr Musiliu Obanikoro and his Police affairs counterpart, Jelili Adesiyan, to continue with their journey to Ekiti State.
Condemning the development, Governor Fayemi and other APC leaders at the mega rally, described it as a descent to dictatorship, urging Nigerians to resist moves by the federal government to use security operatives to undermine governors and subvert the will of the citizens.
“A situation where state governors and other citizens can no longer move freely in the country is highly condemnable. This is the height of intolerance.
“What has happened to freedom of movement, freedom of association, freedom of expression and freedom of choice, which are well entrenched in the constitution of the country?” they queried.