House Majority Leader, Hon. Ahassan Ado Doguwa, has cautioned leaders of the opposition New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP) to stop the campaign of calumny against his person and the All Progressives Congress (APC), following the fallout of the just concluded Presidential and National Assembly elections, held on February 25.
Dogwa, in a statement on Tuesday, denounced the negative campaign against his person, declaring that political parties should not be sore losers.
The statement, which was personally signed by the House Leader, read in part:
“My attention has been drawn to some negative media reports and some frivolous comments emanating from the camp of the NNPP following the outcome of the National Assembly elections conducted in Doguwa/TWD Federal Constituency of Kano State on February 25, 2023,
which I won.
“I want to categorically state that the negative comments about the election and every attempt to discredit my victory at the polls are not only baseless insinuations deliberately aimed at tarnishing, denigrating, and maligning my innocent personality, they are all a display of desperation and unsportsmanlike characters of politicians.
“It is sad that all these pronouncements and media campaigns and posturing were designed by the opposition NNPP to discredit the conduct of a free and fair election.
“In view of the above, therefore, I wish to make it abundantly clear that our election went on successfully and peacefully in all the 21 registration areas of my federal constituency.
“In fact, the conduct of the election at polling units was generally hitch free, and the collation of results in the two Local Government Areas respectively were also done peacefully and in compliance with extant electoral procedures.
“The police and the independent electoral monitors and observers attest to this.
“However, I must state categorically that at a point when arrangements were put in place by INEC to commence the final collation of the results of the Federal Constituency in TUNDUNWADA TOWN, members of the opposition NNPP, knowing fully well that they had lost the election in both LGAs ignited a crisis by instigating political thugs, hired hunters and irate youths carrying all sorts of dangerous weapons including guns with live ammunition to disrupt the collation process and stall the elections from being announced.
“I understand clearly that the thugs were instigated by a member of the state House of Assembly, a former Commissioner, and a retired Air commodore as they were fingered in the crisis.
“The police, possibly because of their small number, could not immediately contain the reckless attitude of the opposition NNPP members.
“When we observed that the police could not stop these thugs, our party supporters actually went to the Collation center to help in clearing the unruly youths who had at the time already taken over the highway, burning tires and blowing explosives to scare people and stop normal traffic movements.
“We also uncovered mischievous plans by the NNPP Leaders who directed their party’s thugs to burn down the INEC office and the election results.
“Our people actually came out to defend the INEC office and it’s officials, to protect our election results and other materials.
“We, as a party, did not hire or employ any thug to work against the declaration of the result, which we knew we had legitimately won.
“At this juncture, I am constrained to state that to the best of my knowledge, nobody was killed or injured during the election.
“The opposition was only making unfounded claims in the social media space.
“Nobody burnt the INEC office. People who care can go to see for themselves.
“I was told that the NNPP LGA office which was located some 50 meters from the LGA INEC office got burnt down by NNPP thugs in an unusual display of strange exctacy because they had stocked petrol in Jerry cans and other explosives which they wanted to deploy in the planned attack on the Tundunwada Collation Centre.
“Our supporters did not burn the NNPP office and they were not responsible for any loss of life whatsoever in the crisis that was deliberately orchestrated by thugs, whose nefarious acts are being celebrated by those we can call unprofessional media men and social media bandits.
“Nigerians may wish to know that earlier on, we got reports that the same NNPP supporters had burnt down seven of our campaign vehicles in Tundunwada in the build up to the February 25 2023 election. The same thugs had equally attacked, destroyed and demolished the APC Party Office, also on the 23rd of February when Senator RABI’U KWANKWASO staged a rally into Kano through Zaria road.
“The same NNPP thugs went to my personal house located at Isiyaka RABI’U estate along Zaria road, attacked my people, destroyed the property and burnt down about six vehicles belonging to my supporters who were holding meeting in the compound.
“I have reported all these incidences to the police command, but no action was taken whatsoever. I cannot be above the law, but no one else should be. It’s my candid view that what happened in Tundunwada and by extension in some others LGAs of Kano state were designed and perpetuated by the reckless NNPP members under the cover of the Leadership of the NNPP and its leader Senator RABI’U KWANKWASO.
“The NNPP is not only lawless, they are desperate political actors who erroneously felt they could secure political power through violence and mischief making.
“The police must wake up to their responsibilities to defend and protect public order and maintain peace.
“In a situation where some political actors can be allowed to take arms and weapons to the streets and nothing is being done, then actually, our democracy and electoral process would always be undermined.
“I won my election freely, and fairly, results were publicly announced, I was declared the winner, and there is nothing anyone could do to alter it!
CALL FOR CALM
“I, however, call for calm as I want to use this medium to call on my supporters, members of my party the ruling APC to remain calm and be law abiding and disregard all malicious and baseless publicity through the peddling of fake news against my humble self. “The truth would always prevail.
“I also noticed in the social media that some platforms had claimed that I was arrested by the police in Kano. Some even said that I was invited. I was never invited by the Police at this point in time and I am not aware of any formal police invitation on any matter whatsoever. “But if the police require my attention, I will always avail myself to answer any questions they may want to ask. I remain a responsible Nigerian citizen and cannot be above the law in any guise whatsoever!”
Hon. Alhassan Ado Doguwa
HOUSE of Representatives