Suspected gunmen on Sunday night invaded the Abuja residence of the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, John Odigie-Oyegun.
The bandits, according to the Police, met Odigie-Oyegun’s wife at home and snatched N200,000 from her.
But the APC chairman,who was not at home as of the time of the attack, said the armed men did not touch anything , including wristwatches and iPad, in his bedroom before leaving.“I hope it was a case of robbery which was confined only to my bedroom. Fortunately for me, I wasn’t home. They operated and went away,” he told one of our correspondents on Monday.
The former Edo State governor added, “God only knows what the real intent was because they didn’t go to any other part of the house. They only went to my bedroom and harassed my wife to no end and went away. When you put everything together, it doesn’t make sense.
“I had two wristwatches on my side table. I had my iPad there and they didn’t touch anything. To make it look like a robbery, they messed up the whole room and went away.”
He also said the matter had been reported to the police.
The Force Public Relations Officer, Mr. Emmanuel Ojukwu, had while confirming the incident, said it was a case of “break-in and burglary.”
“We have commenced an investigation into the incident. The sum of N200,000 was snatched from Oyegun’s wife during the attack,” he added.
Asked if the attackers could have had sinister motives, Ojukwu explained that such had not been established.
The APC, in a statement by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, hoped that the police investigation would reveal the identities of those behind the raid.
It said, ‘‘The facts of the raid as available so far point to a sinister motive. For example, only Chief Oyegun’s room was ransacked in the whole house. Common sense dictates that if the invaders were robbers, they would have ransacked the whole house in search of money and other valuables which they might have believed were in the residence.
‘‘The invaders, two burly men, removed the window burglar bars to gain access to the residence from the back, and then made straight for the bedroom of our national chairman. Police security was in place at the residence when the incident happened.’’
The party said while it did not know who was behind the raid, the angry speeches and personality attacks that had been directed at the opposition by the leadership of the PDP and their spokesmen had heightened tension and put the lives of opposition politicians at risk.
The Director General of the APC Presidential Campaign Organisation, Rotimi Amaechi, who first broke the news in Abuja, had lamented that “if Abuja which before now you could drive anywhere at any time you cannot be protected, we don’t know what is next.”
He told APC supporters during the inauguration of the party’s national campaign headquarters and the presidential campaign council, that “our chairman is not here because he was robbed last (Sunday) night.”
Amaechi, who is also the Rivers State Governor, said the February general elections represented the best opportunity for the opposition to clinch power at the federal level.
He said, “This is our best chance; they may never be another chance like this. We can’t afford to lose it; we cannot also afford to disagree on any issue.
“We must agree that President Goodluck Jonathan and the PDP(Peoples Democratic Party) have had their cups filled by themselves and that the society wants them out.
“Fortunately for us, we have a good candidate (Maj.Gen. Muhammadu Buhari).”
At the event, Buhari urged his supporters to shun violence and other acts capable of tarnishing APC’s image.
He also urged them to be vigilant before, during and after the general elections.
He added, “This is necessary so that sponsored hoodlums do not have a chance to commit illegalities and in the end, our members are blamed.
“Not only must you not take the law into your hands, no matter the level of provocation, you must be able to expose those planning to do so before the act.
“My supporters must not engage in any kind of behaviour or conduct that will tarnish the image of any leader or promote division and rancour within the ranks of the party. Whoever does that should know that he or she is working for the enemy.”
Buhari was obviously inferning to the allegation by the Director Media and Publicity of the PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, Mr. Femi Fani-Kayode, that he was making inciting comments to prepare the grounds for post-election violence.
The APC candidate also expressed gratitude to the leaders of the party as well those who contested against him during the party’s presidential primary in Lagos.
He singled out the former Interim National Chairman of the APC, Chief Bisi Akande, and an ex-Lagos State Governor, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, for praise for their roles in the successful merger of opposition political parties.
Buhari noted that the APC owed everything to the “tack and wisdom” of Akande.
“Next, is the role played by Asiwaju Tinubu whose sacrifices, organisational skills and extensive political network strengthened the blocks of the merger that has taken the APC to unprecedented heights in various areas of the country,” he added.
The presidential candidate enjoined the APC to institutionalise the process which produced him as the party’s candidate.
He pointed out that the primaries demonstrated to all and sundry that the APC was committed to the ideals of democracy.
Buhari also appealed to his supporters to extend their support beyond his person because it was the party that provided the platform for him and several other qualified persons to run for elective offices.
On the party’s chances in the forth- coming elections, he said, “We are in this campaign to win and we shall win. We undertake to end impunity by the PDP, a party that has proved to be clueless in every material sense.
“It has no concern for the welfare of the people of this country. This it has demonstrated over the past five years. It has become impervious to all.”
He took a swipe at the Jonathan administration for the recent massacre of close to 2,000 people by the Boko Haram in Baga, Borno State.
The former military ruler said that to the PDP-led Jonathan administration, the number represented mere statistics.
Buhari said, “Boko Haram attacked Baga in Borno State reportedly killing 2,000 people but to this clueless government, it is just statistics that add up to the litany (of such killings). Worst of all, this PDP government has exploited all the fault lines.”
He promised that an APC government would efficiently manage the nation’s resources and protect Nigerians from domestic and external threats.
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