The Peoples Democratic Party in Ekiti State has criticized President Muhammadu Buhari for holding meetings with the Ekiti State Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Jide Awe, in the Presidential Villa, saying he is wanted for alleged murder in the state.
A statement on Sunday by the party’s publicity Secretary, Jackson Adebayo, said Mr. Awe is wanted by the Police in Ekiti over the murder of Ayi Murphy Jeje and uliana Adewummi in Erinjiyan-Ekiti in 2013.
Mr. Awe, as chairman of APC in Ekiti State, had attended a meeting of APC state chairmen with the President at the Presidential Villa on Saturday.
Mr. Adebayo said Mr. Awe disappeared from the state after his effort to get the court to restrain his arrest was vacated, but was recently sighted at the Aso Rock Villa.
He said allowing Mr. Awe into Aso Rock smacked of a show of support for “one suspected to have murdered someone”.
“We heard that President Buhari said he is going to reopen cases of political murder,” the PDP said. “Yet, the same president allowed into Aso Villa, Jide Awe, who has refused to make himself available for trial for alleged murder even after a Federal High Court in Jos vacated an interlocutory injunction preventing Jide Awe from being arrested and tried for murder.
“We frown at this open display of insensitivity to the agony of the families of those who were allegedly murdered by Jide Awe and others, and we want to believe that President Buhari was not well briefed on his (Awe) evasion of trial.
“Perhaps, President Buhari was unaware and his security details, who should also know, did not inform him that Jide Awe and four other members of the APC, namely: Faboro John, Aniramu Basiru, Falayi Busuyi and Owonifari Sefiu were declared wanted by the police for their alleged involvement in the murder of two persons in Erinjiyan-Ekiti, Ekiti State, on March 31, 2013.
“Justice A. Lewis-Allagoa of the Federal High Court in Jos had also ruled in December last year that nobody can tie the hands of the police from performing their constitutional duties, saying an earlier order he granted, restraining the arrest of Jide Awe and others, was just for a limited time.
“Since the court vacated its order restraining Jide Awe’s arrest and trial for alleged murder, he has remained a fugitive.
“It was therefore worrisome and embarrassing that such a person could be granted access to the Presidential Villa and be allowed to take photographs with the president.”
Efforts to get the APC to respond to the statement was not fruitful as calls and text messages sent to the telephone of spokesman Taiwo Olatunbosun were not replied.