Po­lice warn Nyako over venue of Jonathan’s rally

Daily Trust - - NEWS - From Kabiru R. An­war, Yola

Fol­low­ing com­plaints from the People’s Demo­cratic Party (PDP) that the Adamawa State govern­ment re­fused to al­low the use of the Ribadu Square in Yola to host Pres­i­dent Good­luck Jonathan next week, po­lice au­thor­i­ties have asked Gover­nor Mur­tala Nyako to re­scind the de­ci­sion.

In a let­ter to the gover­nor, Po­lice Com­mis­sioner John Abakasang said the Ribadu Square, be­ing a pub­lic fa­cil­ity, should be ac­ces­si­ble to the pub­lic for of­fi­cial and pri­vate use.

The let­ter, dated April 22, a copy made avail­able to jour­nal­ists, also said PDP in­tends to use the venue for law­ful party ac­tiv­i­ties that do not por­tend any threat to the people of the state.

Abakasang ad­vised Nyako to re­con­sider his po­si­tion and al­low all reg­is­tered po­lit­i­cal par­ties ac­cess to the pub­lic square, say­ing “our state is frag­ile and we must do all it takes to main­tain its rel­a­tive peace.”

He said, “Your Ex­cel­lency, you have been known to be a man of peace and not other­wise, these steps were nec­es­sary so that dis­grun­tled el­e­ments do not take ad­van­tage of the de­nial to throw the state into chaos.”

“We be­lieve that the re­fusal to al­low some groups of people the use of the venue for law­ful ac­tiv­i­ties and grant­ing ap­proval to other groups to use the same venue could pose more ten­sion than mak­ing the venue avail­able for use by ev­ery group,” the com­mis­sioner added.

He said the state po­lice com­mand may not be able to cope with the threats that may arise as a re­sult of govern­ment’s re­fusal to re­lease the venue.

The PDP plans to host Pres­i­dent Jonathan at Ribadu Square on April 29, when he is ex­pected to re­ceive re­tired Gen­eral Mo­hammed Buba Marwa and Mr Mar­cus Gundiri who re­cently de­fected to the PDP from the All Pro­gres­sives Congress (APC).

But Nyako’s spokesman Ah­mad Sa­joh said the Ribadu Square is run by a man­age­ment com­mit­tee and so the gover­nor is not di­rectly re­spon­si­ble for grant­ing per­mis­sion for the use of the fa­cil­ity.

Sa­joh ac­cused the PDP of a smear cam­paign against Nyako and his govern­ment to achieve a po­lit­i­cal point.

He said the state govern­ment re­spects the of­fice of the pres­i­dent and as such will not do any­thing that could cause con­fu­sion dur­ing the pres­i­dent’s visit.

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