Chinwe Ugele

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) has out rightly rejected the planned commencement of nationwide operation “python dance 111” recently launched by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai.

Operation “egwu eke” was originally carried out in the South Eastern part of Nigeria on two different occasions where the army claimed to have recorded successes in combating crimes.

It is believed that the perceived success of this operation in the Igbo speaking part of Nigeria at the time when the activities of IPOB were at their peak in the region, led to the decision by the army hierarchy to extend the operation to the entire country.

The army chief announced that the nationwide exercise which will be ”egwu eke 111”, will commence on January 1, 2019 till February 28 .

He said the exercise was in preparation for the 2019 elections, aimed at confronting security challenges before, during and after the polls.

Disturbed by this development, the main opposition party in the country, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), has accused president Buhari of plotting to use the planned operation to “legitimize his administration’s ploy of using the military to intimidate voters and rig the 2019 presidential election
In a statement signed by the Publicity Secretary of the party, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, Buhari planned to use the military having realized that he cannot win in a free and fair poll.

He said the plot is in line with the alleged desperation of the buhari presidency to foist a siege mentality on the nation ahead of 2019 general elections.

“Our investigation shows that part of the plot is to use the military operation as a subterfuge to unleash heavy security presence to intimidate, harass and instil fear in voters in PDP strongholds across the country and pave the way for allocation of fictitious votes to president Buhari and the APC.”

He also accused the presidency of conniving with officials of INEC and the military to provide cover for alleged diversion of electoral materials.

According to Ologbondiyan, “In spanning the military operation to February 28, 2019, the Buhari presidency betrayed its anticipation of public rejection or violence, which can only come when a result that does not reflect the actual wish of the people is announced.”

He said that Nigerians all over the world, including the presidency understand the direction the 2019 presidential election is flowing, as the people are yearning for a new president having lost confidence in Buhari for his alleged failures in governance.

“The PDP PCO, therefore rejects this deliberate attempt by the Buhari presidency to set our military on a collision course with Nigerians, bearing in mind the collateral damage that usually occurs whenever the civilian population clashes with the military,” he said.

He continued, “Our nation is a democratic state and we are not in a state of emergency that requires the militarization of our electoral process, our military which is cherished by Nigerians should therefore foreclose any attempt by the Buhari presidency to use it to set our country on fire.”

He concluded by saying that instead of another round of electoral crisis, what Nigerians need at this point to peacefully elect a new president at the polls in order to reposition the nation.’‘

Chinwe Ugele

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