Monarchs in Ekiti State yesterday condemned the alleged unwarranted attack on Governor Ayodele Fayose.The Chairman of the Council, Oba Oluwole Ademolaju, said this in a communiqué yesterday at the end of their emergency meeting in Ado Ekiti.
They appealed to the police to refrain from further harassment, intimidation and brutality of innocent citizens of the state, till end of the election and beyond.The monarchs implored the people to be calm and go about their normal duties without fear of molestation.
They expressed worries that, if such a thing could happen to a sitting governor, they wondered what would happen to the ordinary citizens in the course of the election.He disclosed that before the incident, the monarchs had held several meetings with stakeholders in the election.He said: “Council had met with the participating party leaders and the gubernatorial candidates, including the police and other law enforcement agencies.
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the civil society organisations and the diplomatic community were also part of the meeting, he said.“During these meetings, the traditional rulers preached peace and implored all concerned to be neutral and unbiased.
“Most especially, we had requested the law enforcement agencies to refrain from intimidation, harassment and brutality of the people.“We are therefore disturbed that after all our appeal and entreaties, the police still went ahead to unleash mayhem on the governor and innocent citizens right in front of the Government House,” he said.Ademolaju added: “What happened showed that Ekiti State is under siege. We are not in war and we don’t want the place to be turned into a war zone. Election is a civil exercise and should remain so.”
The monarchs appealed to INEC to remain an unbiased umpire and be fair to all, and also provide a level-playing field for all parties in the election.The rulers further urged all participants to accept the outcome of a free, fair and transparent election.In a related response, the Ekiti Council of Elders asked security agencies to remain very professional and unbiased in their duties to ensure a free, fair and credible poll tomorrow.
In a statement by the Chairman, Prof. Joseph Oluwasanmi and Secretary, Elder Niyi Ajibulu, they said: “The massive deployment of security was causing fear, tension and great anxiety among our people, who should ordinarily freely exercise their franchise without intimidation.“We consider the unfortunate incident at the Government House as most embarrassing, because they are the symbols of authority that should be accorded the respect that they duly deserve.”