THE Concerned People Frontiers (CPF), a group within the Oyo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has accused the party’s Deputy National Chairman Taofeek Arapaja of intimidating aspirants and delegates at the just concluded federal and state assembly primary elections in Ibadan on Sunday.
In a statement by its secretary Kunle Fasasi, the group noted that there were no primary elections in Ibadan South-East state constituency and Ibadan North East/South East federal constituency as aspirants and some delegates were allegedly forced out of the venue by armed thugs and security personnel on Arapaja’s orders.
The group alleged that Arapaja threatened to shoot the aspirants and delegates if they refuse to leave the venue.
According to the statement, the incident happened in Saint John Primary School, Alake, for constituency II, Mapo Hall for constituency I and Goodwill Hall, Adekile Orita Aperin, Ibadan for the House of Representatives.
The group further alleged that Arapaja’s aim was to pave the way for his anointed candidates to emerge after initially failing in his attempt to impose them as consensus candidates.
The statement said, “The Deputy National Chairman of our party, Ambassador Taofeek Arapaja invaded the venue of the primaries with armed thugs, police and soldiers harassing, intimidating and threatening us with guns and ordering us to leave the venue of the primary or we should be shot.
“We want to bring to the notice of party national headquarters what happened in Oyo State, and if this show of shame is not corrected, we have no option that to seek redress legally.
“There was no primaries in Ibadan South East State Assemblies and Ibadan North East/South East Federal Constituency. Although they might come up with a winner but it was glaring there was no primaries as confirmed by INEC officials in an interview at the venue. The atmosphere was not conducive and it was really discouraging and sad. This is not democracy”.
The group called on the national leadership of the party to conduct another rancour-free poll, warning that it would challenge the outcome of the primaries if their grievances were not addressed.
When contacted, Arapaja’s spokesperson, Ibrahim Bamitale said the allegations were not true.
He added that his boss was only at the venue for the primaries as a stakeholder.