In what seemed a foretaste of what would happen in next month’s election, violence broke out in Gona Village of Akko Local Government Area of Gombe State, on Sunday. The violence, a report says, was allegedly instigated by supporters of the APC governorship candidate, Umar Mohammed, on their way to a campaign rally in the town.
The APC supporters were said to have burnt down billboards of Governor Dankwambo and other PDP property in the town. Innocent shop-owners also suffered some losses as their shops burnt with the billboards.
Both the APC and PDP have remonstrated on which between them instigated the violence.
Dankwambo’s spokesperson, Junaidu Abubakar, Premium Times says, confirmed the incident.
Abubakar said “In their quest to destroy the billboards of the governor and burn PDP office, peoples shops were also burnt down completely.”
Abubakar said the incident caused pandemonium, as uninformed residents thought it was a book haram attack.
“Many people began running into the bush thinking that Boko haram are attacking them,” Abubakar said.
Countering Abubakar’s claims, Umar Mohammed, secretary of the APC in Gombe State, said the PDP caused the mayhem.
“We were on our way to Billiri to receive decampees and as usual advanced party were asked to move ahead of the candidate’s convoy,” he said.
Mohammed said, “PDP members then blocked the road in Gona and refused to allow our members passage which led to a fight between them.
“One of our members was even seriously wounded with a knife and is presently in hospital receiving treatment.”
He said even after the programme in Billiri, words reached the APC that PDP supporters in Gona were armed and ready to ambush them on their way to Gombe.
“When we heard what happened, we had to divert through Deba to go back to Gombe,” he said.
Mohammed said APC governorship candidate’s residence was attacked three days ago by hoodlums suspected to be PDP supporters.
“They destroyed about five vehicles and injured one of his police security detail who is still receiving treatment,” he said.