Sunday, 15 February 2015

Tarzoor Reacts: I urge restraint and calm

I have been in Abuja since Thursday, and it was while sorting out important party matters over the weekend that I received reports that vandals attacked opposition offices and properties around the metropolis, destroying cars and pulling down billboards.

I found this very difficult to take because I spent much of Thursday looking at sites of my own campaign billboards and those of my supporters destroyed by opposition elements and at every spot, I urged for restraint and called on my supporters and the entire PDP faithful to remain calm and law abiding as perpetrators of these unprovoked attacks will be fished out.

It thus came as a surprise to me when I learnt of reports that thugs had invaded opposition strongholds, dastardly acts the opposition has been quick to attribute to the PDP. I have been briefed by the party hierarchy and while early investigations suggest the perpetrators of these acts may have been fifth columnists within opposition ranks, I make bold to say that most of my supporters have behaved responsibly throughout the duration of our electioneering efforts.

We have been attacked repeatedly, but we have maintained the peace, we have been provoked, but we have exercised restraint, we have been insulted and abused, but my admonition has always been one of self-control and peace.

I have preached no violence all through my campaigns and this mantra, to this very moment has not changed. Most of my supporters have imbibed my personal philosophy of ‘Vote, not fight, election no be war, so we have been peaceful and orderly in all our campaigns all through the length and breadth of Benue State.

While it is not out of place for a few bad eggs within the party to try to cause trouble, the attacks over the weekend, as I learnt, were caused by opposition thugs, encouraged by the internal wrangling within their camp and not by PDP supporters as insinuated.

Investigations are still ongoing and should any PDP supporters be found culpable, they will be dealt with according to the law. However, when these investigations are concluded and the PDP is exonerated as I know we would, then Benue citizens must move to the polls and say no to violence of any sort by rejecting sponsors and promoters of anarchy and disorder within our midst.

The PDP has always been known to be a law abiding institution and most of our supporters have always towed the line of peace and order over time. Personally, I have always maintained that these elections would be decided by popular will, through the choice of the people as freely expressed at the polls.

I urge restraint and calm and call on all party supporters to be law abiding. This is not a time to be aggressive, this is not a time to be forceful or belligerent, this is a time for passionate appeal to the populace, a time for dialogue and constant conversation, a time to be persuasive, to be subtle- a time to imprint our message of hope into the minds of the people.

Elections are not won via billboards or posters, pulling down our posters does not pull us down in the eyes of the people, nor does it pull us out of the minds of the populace. Destroying our campaign materials and maiming us, and even trying to kill us, does not kill the spirit of the Greater Benue Agenda nor does it diminish our resolve in bringing development to our land.

I urge you all to remain law abiding and trust our security agencies to protect us against any breach of public peace.

Once again, thank you for your support and prayers.
Source : Terhemen Tarzoor Page

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