Hoodlums suspected to be political thugs loyal to opponents of the Honourable Member representing Ado/Ogbadibo/Okpokwu Federal Constituency, Dr. Francis Ottah Agbo, has set one of the lawmaker’s campaign billboard located at Ekeh Ward on the Otukpo-Enugu Express Way, in Okpokwu Local Government Area of Benue State ablaze.
It was gathered that the incident happened over the weekend.
The lawmaker’s media aide, Andrew Agbese, who confirmed the incident in a statement Sunday, said Ottah Agbo who doubles as Chairman of the Narcotic Drugs Committee as well as the Spokesman, Minority Caucus, said being a Christian, he has forgiven the arsonists.
Describing the act as criminal and unfortunate, the Feedback Lawmaker said it is unimaginable that people would resort to arson and violence in the 21st Century where dialogue, persuasion and delivery of dividends of democracy should be the hallmarks of politicking.
He said: “By the grace of God and the will of the people, we shall win the PDP primary this month, as well as the 2023 general election because of the iron-clad support and solidarity, I enjoy from the people of Ado/Okpokwu,/Ogbadibo Federal Constituency. The anointing is with us and no amount of intimidation and violence can suppress the will of our people. The conspiracy against me will fizzle out like the candle in the wind. The naysayers are scanty and drowning and that is why they’ve resorted to crudity and destruction of my communicative billboards in Okpokwu.
“As a committed democrat and one of the journalists who fought for the return and entrenchment of democracy in this country, I will not descend to their level of brigandage and criminality.
“I am more concerned about using my office to get more sustainable employment to the youth in my constituency and have them develop entrepreneual skills rather than using them as thugs and arsonists against political opponents.
“Like I have always said, I have no human enemies to fight. My only enemies are poverty, ignorance, diseases and underdevelopment and not burning of the property of my opponents.”
The Lawmaker called on the youth not to allow themselves to be used as thugs and arsonists and reminded them that the politician who usually sends them to carry out such criminal acts will not use his children to do so, because of the risks involved!
“Great Enonites, don’t allow him use you, he has secured good jobs for his children but he is using you for criminal acts. Resist him for he doesn’t mean well for you.
“Next time he asks you to go and kill or burn someone’s property, tell him to use his children,” he said.
The Lawmaker however said he has reported the matter to the relevant authorities for necessary action.
Meanwhile, political leaders and several groups and associations in Ado, Ogbadibo, Okpokwu Federal otherwise known as Enone Constituency have condemned the dastardly act and expressed solidarity with the Lawmaker.
By Edoka Itodo