By Ochiaka Ugwu
Coalitions of civil society groups have in strong terms condemned an attack on Adamawa Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Chieftain, Umar Ardo, and his supporters by thugs alleged to be loyal to state government.
In a statement released in Abuja yesterday by a coalition of six civil society groups namely, Northern Youth Democratic Movement led by Iliyasu Musa, Transparency Movement led by Paul Ibrahim, Northern Coalition for Democracy led by Nura lsmail.
Others are: Supreme Niger Delta Council World Wide led by Bassey Ewa, Transparency Centre led by Umar Farouk, Ooduwa Discussion Group led by Wale Adegoke and Rights Monitoring Network led by Victor John.
They noted that It has come to them as a rude shock the report of violent attack and destruction of property belonging to Dr Umar Ardo a chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party and his supporters in Adamawa state by deadly thugs.
“We are particularly disturbed over the turn of events in the political terrain of the state particularly yesterday as epitomized on the show of shame exhibited by people trying to shut down the political space against peaceful and non violent assembly of genuine party members trying to chart a way forward in line with their political beliefs, aspirations, convictions and principles.
“All pro democracy groups in Nigeria that fought assiduously during the military era for the restoration of democracy, as the system which afford not only representative governance but also giving opportunity to other with contrary views to have a voice should reject the emerging reign arbitrariness unfolding in the state.
“We make bold to say that the ugly incident witnessed in Yola against the PDP led Ardo is a clear violation of their democratic rights to freedom of assembly, choice and expression as enshrined in the Nigerian constitution.
“It is a negation of the true spirit of democracy and its ideals. It must be condemned by all democratic loving citizens. It is on record that Dr Ardo has been very consistent in the PDP fold, since it is formative years. He has challenged successive Governors in the Adamawa and there was never a time such kind of primitive and barbaric attack ever unleashed against.
“We can without reservation testify that he has garnered a political pedigree and antecedent in non violent and tolerant political struggles against maladministration and oppression in Adamawa” the statement read in part.