MEMBERS of People’s Democratic Party (PDP), on Monday staged a protest against an alleged intimidation by the traditional ruler of Imota area of Ikorodu, Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports the mammoth crowd of protesters carried placards with different inscriptions like “Election is not war”, “Stop cursing residents voting for other parties”.
“PDP called for caution and peace from leaders and elders in the community”, saying Imota PDP has brought development to the community, so why will the Oloro traditional ruler curse PDP members and many others.
The protesters who gathered in their numbers moved around the community displaying their placards. They also visited the palace of the traditional ruler to express their grievances.
Earlier, Mr Adewale Oyebo, PDP candidates for Lagos State House of Assembly,(LAHA), Ikorodu Constituency 2, appealed to the community leaders to allow residents to vote for candidates of their choice in the forthcoming Governorship and Assembly election.
Oyebo assured the residents of his support and appealed to the electorates to go out en masse and exercise their franchise as directed by the constitution of Nigeria.
“The protest is good and very successful in this our community in Imota.
“We have some other communities that make up Ikorodu constituency 2, such as Ijede, Ibeshe, Igbogbo, Baiyeku and others with traditional rulers.
“Traditional rulers are not supposed to be political but this area of Imota, the ruler is intimidating voters with charms, and cursing those who will want to vote for other parties apart from the All Progressives Congress (APC),” he alleged.
He assured members of victory and urged residents to come out en masse to vote for the PDP which will bring more dividends of democracy to the the community if voted into power.
He promised to organise sports activities and empowerment programmes for the youths, provide affordable shops for market men and women, provide clean water, sponsor bills on health and education.
He also promised to provide scholarship to students among others.
“It is high time people should allow another government to take over and solve the current hardship residents are passing through.
“I have different programmes ranging from free education, women empowerment and so on if voted for,” he said.
Also speaking, Mr Adedolapo Arowolo, Chairman, Ward B1 Imota, appealed to party supporters and electorates to disregard the intimidation and concentrate on canvassing people for vote to avoid voters apartheid.
“This is the usual attitude of our traditional leaders in this area, especially during election period. Eventually it will cause voter aparthy because they have instilled fear into the electorates,” he said.
Responding, the traditional ruler, Oba Ajibade Agoro, the Ranodu of Imota, said that he directed other traditional leaders to perform rituals to the gods to ensure peace and avert any form of violence that may occur during the election in the community.
“It is indeed true that we did something (Etutu) in Imota, but it is for the benefit and peace of our community, however, no name or party was mentioned.
“When I saw them, I thought they are doing political campaign or rally, not knowing it was a protest because I was in the palace.
“We only do Etutu for the community to be peaceful during election considering what the we have gone through in the past on violence during elections.
“There are about 26 political parties, why is that only PDP are the ones complaining, I don’t want anybody to over hit the polity,” he said. (NAN)