The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC), Thursday, strongly condemned attempts to muzzle the opposition in the Edo state governorship election by using security agents to coerce them.
It described the development as “fascist, anachronistic and unacceptable”.
MURIC said in a statement made available to The UNION that “the world has drifted far away from gestapo tactics”.
The statement signed by its Director, Prof. Ishaq Akintola, noted that “opposition leaders in Edo State have alleged arbitrary arrests and intimidation of their members just a few days to the gubernatorial election in the state”.
It also stated that “the request for postponement of the election made by security agencies has also become a source of worry as the opposition allege that it is another design by the ruling party to gain the upper hand”.
In its statement, MURIC said: “To keep faith with its avowed change mantra, the ruling party must distance itself from all those filthy tricks of the past and ensure a peaceful, free, fair and credible election.
“MURIC reminds the major dramatis personae that as past Nigerian leaders are invited to head international observer teams in elections held in other countries, the world is also waiting to see how Nigerians handle their own elections.
“In particular, we call on the various political parties to rein in militant supporters in order to ensure a peaceful election. Thuggery and hooliganism are marks of political intolerance. Looting, arson, and killings are barbaric acts not fit to be found in civilized societies.
MURIC also demanded “the immediate release of members of the opposition whose arrests may have been politically motivated, if any. We charge security agents to remain non-partisan, to focus on professionalism and to respect Allah-given fundamental human rights throughout the period of the election”.