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PRESIDENCY: PDP lied on alleged stoning of Buhari’s helicopter in Kano

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The Presidency has described the spreading narrative of the stone-pelting attack on President Muhammadu Buhari‘s helicopter in Kano State as an attempt by the opposition People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to mislead the public on facts of the incident.

Reports circulating online have it that angry residents hurled stones at one of the helicopters that carried some members of the President’s entourage when he visited Kano State on Monday.

However, reacting to the incident, the Presidency said the narrative was wrong as Buhari was already being hosted to a banquet at the Kano State Government House at the time of the incident, alleging further that the sponsors of the narrative were hoping to use it to drive a wedge between government and the ruling party.

According to a statement by Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Malam Shehu Garba, the facts of reported incident, as provided by law enforcement agencies, were that it was a clash between the Kano Road Transport Authority (KAROTA)  and thugs hired by a yet-to-be identified group.

The Presidency, however, berated the opposition party for celebrating a breakdown of public order, even though it was minor.

“We have seen fake reports of a stone-pelting incident that took place in the Hotoro area of Kano on the day of the visit to the city by President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday, an incident, even if minor, that should stand condemned by all well-meaning citizens.

“Facts on ground, as rendered by the law enforcement agencies, speak of a clash between the local road transport authorities, the Kano Road Transport Authority (KAROTA)  and thugs hired by a yet-to-be identified group, that took place when the President was being treated to a banquet at the Government House, well after he had finished his projects commissioning.

“The President was in the state to work on the development, safety and security of the lives of common citizens and the happy thing about it was that the good people of Kano State were appreciative of him for the progress the state and the nation at large are making under him. 

“The divisive rhetoric of an opposition in a futile attempt to malign the image of the President and the candidates of the All Progressives Congress in the coming elections, and its desperate wedge-driving activities to cause a division between the party and the government is not what will give them victory.

“A so-called leading opposition party that controls 14 states, going into elections with eight or nine of the states in tow should look inwards to see why their campaign is flagging and destined to fail. Their defeat is a story foretold by many discerning individuals,” it said.

It further alleged that the minors seen in the video of the incident, engaging the traffic authority in the confrontation, were sponsored by politicians and those sympathizing with terrorists.

“The stone-pelters as seen from the video in the fight against the traffic police were innocent children sponsored by politicians and terrorist sympathizers. There is no place for violence in a democracy.

“The PDP should use the opportunity of the electioneering to put their point of view in a democracy. When problems can be resolved through talks, there is no place for stone-pelting, arson and unruly behavior as we are witnessing in some of the campaigns.

“It is equally unhealthy for society and it becomes the duty of political, social and religious leaders to correctly inform the misled youngsters to shun the path of violence, which is inimical to their own future.

“Lastly is to say that the President has not lost his command and respect in Kano. For those who hold the border closure against him, they must come to realise that the 60-70 integrated rice mills in the city today would not have been in place if he had allowed the free-for-all smuggling to continue,” the presidency added. 

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