THE All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday lashed out at the Department of State Service (DSS) for invading the data centre of the party in Lagos on Saturday, 22nd November 2014.
It described as “plainly implausible and a witless afterthought” the reasons given by the DSS, calling the security service a shameless apologist of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
Similarly, the APC in Lagos challenged the DSS to produce copies of the cloned cards and show Nigerians the copies of the cards it claimed that APC was cloning in its Data Office in Lagos.
In a statement by its Lagos State Publicity Secretary, Joe Igbokwe, the party said the present leadership of the DSS has “turned what should be a viable state security outfit to an attack dog willing and ever ready to do the dirty biddings of the PDP.”
Operatives of the DSS and soldiers attached to the security unit code-named Operation MESA on Saturday stormed the APC data centre in Lagos and arrested 25 data agents and three security guards.
Addressing a press conference in Lagos after conducting journalists round the office, APC’s National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed wondered why a self-respecting intelligence gathering agency will rely on beer parlous gossips in carrying out its onerous responsibility, especially in a politically-charged environment like what prevails in the country at present.
He also called on Nigerians and the country’s international partners to condemn the “primitive action.”
Mohammed said: “The spokesperson for the DSS said the organisation had put the building housing the data centre under surveillance, and that it only acted after it was convinced that ‘unwholesome activities’ were taking place. What hogwash! If indeed they put the place under surveillance, would they not have been able to establish that it is an APC data centre? Even if they were not sure, what prevents them from obtaining a court order permitting them to enter and search the building instead of carrying out a Gestapo-like operation? Are security agencies above the law?”
Main havoc wrecked
The APC spokesperson said following the damage done to the equipment at its data centre in Lagos, it has been forced to suspend its membership registration.
He explained that “the viciousness and barbarism of the attack on the data centre and the arrest of 26 innocent workers, which put a lie to the DSS claim, have disrupted and corrupted the continuous offline and online membership registration across the country.
“The over 50 security men who invaded our offices not only vandalised the offices, they pulled out and carted away the server and computer systems. Their activities have, therefore, affected the process of online/offline registration and data capture of APC members across the country, hence we are left with no choice than to suspend the process.”
While calling for an independent inquiry into the invasion, which he alleged has taken the impunity of the Jonathan administration to its worst level yet, he said it would determine the identity of those who sent the invading force and “meting out the necessary punishment to them, irrespective of their political status.”