The All Progressives Congress (APC) has described as ridiculous, the allegation that it sponsored thugs against protesters at the Nigeria Human Rights Commission (NHRC) head office in Abuja on Monday.
The ruling party said while it recognizes the inalienable rights of people, groups, including political parties to gather or carry out protest by themselves, a chaotic situation where different protesting groups turn on one another was condemnable.
APC spokesman, Lanre Issa-Onilu, in a statement on Tuesday, said: “While we recognise the fundamental liberties of citizens to freely express their views through lawful means, we cannot as a government allow excesses and irresponsible acts. No group or individual has a right to torment the public or display any act of intolerance to other people’s views.
“We note with dismay the attempt by the PDP supporters who try to deceive the public by hiding under various names such as civil society groups, human rights activists, and constitutional lawyers, to link our government to a dastard act as witnessed on Monday.
“It is there for us all to see: there has been no incident of harassment, arrest, or intimidation of anyone or group despite the level of attacks, name-calling, personal insults, and even callous statements being directed at the person of President Muhammadu Buhari by the different PDP leaders and its hideous supporters.
“We are witnessing increasing cases of irresponsible and unrestrained verbal attacks on the Nigerian President by the opposition elements with no consequences. Evidently, President Buhari government has no doubt displayed an avowed commitment to civil liberties and promotion of democracy.
“We would reiterate the need for the various nebulous groups and pretentious individuals to realise that the 2019 elections have been won and lost.
“Masquerading as patriots and promoters of rule of law and democracy to paint the APC government in bad light amounts to an exercise in futility. The discerning public understands that this is a case of an opposition finding it difficult to accept the fact that the election period has ended.
“We, however, remind these charlatans that our government would never succumb to blackmail. At all times, national interest and security, within the limit of our law, would guide our actions. Whenever anyone or group stands in conflict with the laws or poses a threat to our national security, this administration would apply the laws.
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