Tension In A'Ibom As Ribadu, Tinubu, Fashola, Oshiomhole Lead ACN Campaign
UYO, March 08, (THEWILL) - The Presidential campaign rally of the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) in Akwa Ibom State may be greeted with violence tomorrow as feelers from the state reveal some tension between the ruling PDP and main opposition party, as the ACN train canvasses for votes for its Presidential candidate, guber candidate, Senator John James Akpanudoedehe and other candidates seeking various elective offices.
Those expected to lead the ACN rally are Party National Chairman, Chief Bisi Akande; its Presidential candidate Nuhu Ribadu; party founder and financier Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu; Governors Babatunde Fashola, SAN, (Lagos) Adams Oshiomhole (Edo), Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti), Rauf Aregbesola (Osun) and other chieftains.
THEWILL checks revealed that the ACN had intended to host the event at the Uyo township stadium but were refused access to the arena as it was denied police clearance to use the state government run facility.
The Chairman, Media Sub Committee of the Positive Change 2011 organization (the campaign organization of the ACN governorship candidate), Mr. Thomas Akpan, said the state government has continued its old habit of blocking the ACN from using public facilities for its rallies saying that the state police commissioner was simply acting the script of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party.
He said the party had applied for the use of stadium through the Ministry of Youths and Sports but the application was denied under a flimsy excuse that facility was still under construction, even when the PDP used it for an event yesterday.
It still remained unclear where the ACN rally would be staged as at press time.
Mr. Thomas however said the party intends to use the facility if it is unable to secure a suitable alternative venue stressing that the stadium is a public facility.
But in his reaction to the claims by the ACN, the Commissioner for Information and Re-orientation, Mr. Aniekan Umana, in a telephone conversation with THEWILL said the main opposition is raising a false alarm as person or group can be denied the use of the stadium for any reason.
The police public relations officer Mr. Onyekachi Orji said he lacked the capacity to comment on the issue.
Attempts to get the Commissioner of Police to react on the issue were unsuccessful.