By Etop Ekanem
THE Edo State government has raised alarm over alleged plans by some members of the Niger Delta Volunteer Force, NDVF, to infiltrate the state through the waterways ahead of the September 10 governorship election.
Senior Special Assistant on Media to the Governor, Mr Musa Ebomhiana, in a statement said the militants are expected to infiltrate the stronghold of the ruling APC, especially the major towns in Edo North, the South and some local governments in the Central zone with high concentration of non-natives where they can easily mingle with the people undetected.
He said part of their grand plans was to cause make-belief crisis that could lead to fight and maybe shooting at polling centres to distract security personnel. This, he said, might scare innocent voters, especially women and the vulnerable to flee the voting point. The entire scheme, he said, was to work towards cancellation of the election in these APC strongholds.
In a statement, he said: Tthe militants are expected to invade the state through the waterways in Ologbo, Ikpoba Okha Local Government Area and Agenebode, Etsako East Local Government Area. The other entry points are said to be Epkeri and Anegbete in Etsako Central Local Government Area and Siloko in the Ovia North East Local Government. About 4, 000 of these militants are said to have been hired to carry out this dirty job.
“One of the leaders of the group and an indigene of Edo State, who simply gave his name as J. C. Goddon otherwise known as Rambo, said he was duty-bound to expose this evil plan of his colleagues-in-arms because ‘we are for free, fair and peaceful election in Edo State and the entire Niger Delta, nothing less.’
“Goddon also revealed that ‘I have advised some of my colleagues in other groups not to be used to destabilise the election in Edo. I also want to advise the youths here (Edo) not to allow themselves to be used to foment trouble before, during and after the election.’”