The Oganihu Ebonyi Movement, a group promoting peace in Ebonyi State, says the manner the Nigeria Police forcefully dispersed supporters of Mr Peter Obi during their scheduled rally in Abakaliki on Saturday was ‘shameful’.
The police had used teargas to disperse the supporters, codenamed ‘Obi-Dients’, forcing them to scamper for safety. Mr Obi is the presidential candidate of the Labour Party in the 2023 general elections.
Dr Laz Ude Eze, the convener of the movement, made the condemnation in a release made available to Adadareporters.com in Abakaliki on Sunday.
The statement read, “This shameful and utterly disgusting act is a gross violation of the constitutional rights of citizens to a peaceful assembly, freedom of expression and their democratic rights of choice.
“We call on the inspector general of police to investigate the matter immediately and punish the erring officers who abdicated their lawful duty of protecting the citizens but chose to attack them.”
The group commended the organizers for their resilience in accomplishing their solidarity to Obi despite the police threat.
In their words, “We salute and congratulate the courageous and resilient Ebonyi people who defied the attacks and went ahead with their peaceful match.
“We want to remind the law enforcement agents that in a participatory democracy, citizens have the right to assembly peacefully and show support to any candidate of their choice. The police has a responsibility to provide protection, and not to disperse them.
“As a group, we shall continue to promote good governance maka oganihu Ebonyi State.”