The All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) candidate in the 2023 Imo state governorship election, Sir Tony Ejiogu, has expressed sadness over the brutal attack on the president of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) Mr Joe Ajaero in Owerri, the state capital.
The NLC president was in Owerri on Wednesday, November 1, to mobilize Imo workers for a protest rally in the state over an alleged violation and abuse of rights and privileges of workers by the state government, but the planned peaceful protest turned violent with allegations that thugs emerged and descended on the protesters and labour leaders.
In a statement on Thursday November 2, Sir Tony Ejiogu described as a huge embarrassment to the highly cultured and peace-loving people of Imo state, the news that a man of Joe Ajaero’s status would be so treated in his own state where he should be lovingly welcomed.
“Regardless of the sentiment that the perpetrators of this act might express, there is no moral or legal justification for violence against a fellow citizen. There should be no place for violence in the Imo state that we all want to live in and prosper“
“How did we get here as Imolites? When did we become a state where leaders and elders are being disrespected, beaten up and disgraced while our children are watching? When did we become a state that has no respect for the leadership of the working population of our nation?”, he said.
The NLC stated that Mr Ajaero was arrested, “beaten up and blindfolded and taken to an unknown destination where more brutalisation took place, sometimes with bottles”. Images of a badly battered Ajaero later emerged on the internet to the shock of many Nigerians.
Joe Ajaero NLC President
While there are divergent reports about the circumstances around the attack on Comrade Joe Ajaero and how he was whisked away by men of the Police, Sir Ejiogu wants the police to ensure that the perpetrators of this “shameful act” are brought to book.
“While the police have been providing the public with their details of this sad event, please permit me to state that an issue like this should not end on the pages of newspapers and social media, because our state and the police leadership will be on the wrong side of history”
“This is not just a crime against Ajaero’s person, but against Nigerian workers, our state and humanity. I appeal to the Imo State Police Command to ensure thorough investigation of this shameful act, so that its perpetrators are exposed, charged and made to face the consequences of their crime”
The APGA candidate then appealed to the people of the state not to lose hope in the future of Imo state.
“Do not be discouraged by these events. Rather, let them inspire you to troop out on November 11 and use your votes to choose a new future for our state. Vote for a new leadership that has genuine respect for human lives and places the security of the state as its top priority”