Director of media and publicity for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Presidential Campaign Organisation, Chief Femi Fani-Kayode has made it clear that the Presidential candidate of opposition All Progressives Congress (APC), General Muhammadu Buhari is the issues-base campaign PDP found relevant for the 2015 electioneering campaigns.
He said: “We can assure you that our campaign, since we started, has been issues based. In this regard, we believe that Buhari himself, his utterances, his persona, his actions over the last few years and his record in public office are in themselves major and relevant issues.
He added, when he addressed newsmen today in Umuahia, capital of Abia state: “we intend to continue to subject General Buhari to public scrutiny and we will not derail in keeping to that standard until our candidate, President
Goodluck Jonathan, a man of destiny, compassion and character, wins the coming Presidential election.”
Fani-Kayode said that he ws in Umuahia to look into the questions that kept on coming up on the issue of the presidential election centered on the role General Buhari played in the very sad events of the night of January
29, 1966, when a coup d’état took place in Nigeria no less than 300 Igbo army officers, a sitting Head of State, General Aguiyi-Ironsi and a serving Governor of the old Western Region, Colonel Fajuyi, were killed in the most brutal fashion in less than 24 hours.
“It is important for us to look into this today, considering the fact that General Buhari is aspiring to be the next President of Nigeria.
“The Nigerian people have a right to know the truth about Buhari’s role in the tragic events of that night and they do not deserve to be kept in the dark. We deserve to know who did what, who to and how many times. That is the message that I got from most of the igbo leaders that I met on this tour and that is certainly the feeling of most
Nigerians. The days of feeding our people with half-truths and telling them not to discuss the ugly events of the past are long over. It does not stop there.
“The other issues that were raised centered on the role General Buhari allegedly played during the very tragic events in the core north in the mid-60’s just before the civil war when no less than 100,000 innocent and defenceless Igbo civilians, mainly women and children, were killed within a period of three months by irate and well armed local mobs. Many have asked and wondered whether it is true that General Buhari was amongst those that covertly orchestrated and encouraged those killings and that supported the slaughter of these innocent and helpless citizens. We consider this issue most relevant today because this same man, who some people have alleged was involved
in this carnage and genocide, is desperate to become the next President of Nigeria.
“We give thanks to God that Igboland is now a vital and integral part of a united and indivisible Nigeria and that the pains of the civil war are many years behind us yet the wounds inflicted on our minds must be healed, and completely too. This can only be done by the exposion and enunciation of truth and when those that committed the most heinous atrocities against innocent civilians, women and children, even many years ago, are brought to justice. This can only be done after the souls of the innocents that were slaughtered are appeased by ensuring that anyone, no matter how highly placed, that committed or encouraged any crimes against humanity or ethnic cleansing, at any point in time in our history, against their fellow
Nigerians are brought to book. The best way to do that is not to dismiss these grave and serious questions because this man was accused of participating in the terrible atrocities against the Igbo both on January 29, 1966 and during the course of the massacre of innocent civilians in the north in September, October and November 1966.
“At this juncture, we must ask this painful yet pertinent question: is it true that the blood of the Igbo people ran up to the knees of General Buhari on the night of July 29, 1966. These questions were put to General Buhari during the sitting of the late Justice Chukwudufu Oputa-led panel in 2001, and instead of him to answer them accordingly, for attendant matters to be settled once and for all and, if these allegations were indeed true, for him to ask for forgiveness, General Buhari refused to turn up and answer them. Instead of coming clean and making use of this historic opportunity to settle the matter once and for all and make peace, Buhari went to court to ask for an
injunction to restrain the Panel from compelling him to come and give answers. This is very unfortunate and it is nothing but a sad and graphic reflection of his unrepentant and vicious mindset. The truth is that it is because he failed to face the Oputa Panel and answer those questions 14 years ago that we are still asking those questions today.” [myad]