The All Progressives Congress (APC) has restated its call for a meeting of the leadership of the APC and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to stem the rising cases of violence ahead of next month’s polls.
In a statement issued in Lagos on Wednesday by its National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, the party said such a meeting would send a powerful message of zero tolerance to violence to the supporters of both parties.
He said it would equally send good message to other parties and indeed the entire people of Nigeria and the international community, and douse the tension that is building up ahead of the election.
It said the call is a follow-up to the practical steps that have been taken by the APC, dating as far back as May 2014, when it first wrote to the leadership of the PDP calling for such a meeting.
‘’Following up on a meeting of representatives of both parties in Washington, DC, US, April 7 to 8 2014 under the auspices of the CSIS Nigeria Election Forum, at which it was agreed that a joint meeting of both parties be convened to discuss and agree on the crucial issue of a Code of Conduct for the campaigns and the elections, we wrote a letter to the PDP suggesting a bipartisan meeting to address the issue.
‘’We have since been following up on the letter, the latest effort being on December 28 2014, when we again called for the holding of the bipartisan meeting. Apart from its reply to our initial letter, the PDP has not responded to our peace overtures till date,’’ APC said.
The party said, however, that whether or not the PDP signs on to such a meeting, the APC, as a peaceful party, will continue to educate its members and supporters on the need to eschew all forms of violence before, during and after the election.
It restated its pledge to continue working for violence-free polls next month, even though the opposition party has been at the receiving end of a series of grave acts of violence in recent times.