Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Comrade Timi Frank, has warned federal government agencies, including the Federal Inland Revenue (FIRS) not to drag themselves into the politics of 2019 general elections.
A statement Frank signed on Monday in Abuja in reaction to media reports of sealing Intels, a company belong to the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, by the FIRS, said: “This is not the time to play politics with the issues of governance. Could it be another ploy to weaken Alhaji Atiku Abubakar ahead of his perceived ambition for 2019?”
Frank, while condemning the sealing of Intels by FIRS, said: “It is pertinent to note that in the history, since the establishment of Intels, no central government has ever brazenly persecuted Intels like this present government.
“The act of the FIRS, NPA, and FTZ as agencies of government is and can be seen to be a calculated attempt to humiliate Alhaji Atiku Abubakar.
“How come FIRS just realized the non-payment of tax by intels? The export free zone just realized that Intels is operating illegally. If the agencies just realized all these, it means they have shown total failure in discharging their duties. Let’s learn to follow due process.”
While pleading on the Presidency to promptly intervene before it gets out of hands, he added that: “I want to believe that the presidency is not aware of this over bearing and over zealousness on the part of these government agencies. By this, I plead with the presidency to promptly intervene on this matter appropriately in due course before it gets late.”
He warned the government agencies to thread carefully, saying “my thoughts are that some political leaders who are afraid of his profile are hell bent on trauncating his perceived ambition are behind all these.
“The good news is that no matter what these agencies of government do, the prerogative and his decision to run for presidency come 2019 is his fundamental right and rightly so if he so desires.
“Nigeria as it is today has a lot going on and this latest brazen acts by government agencies is the least on the minds of Nigerians.
“We encourage government agencies to do their work but also take note that governance should not be reduced as a tool to witch hunting individuals, by playing petty politics.
“I see this as an intimidation coming from agencies of government of the day on an innocent Nigerian. We must not be cowed by this agencies of government who want to turn themselves to political actors to gain favour from the government of the day.
“Today ii is Atiku, tomorrow it can be any other person and for this purpose we must all stand against this impunity. Let’s all thread carefully as we strive for a better country and democracy.”
The APC chieftain, however, called on Nigerians to rise up to any attempt of vilifying any individual in the guise of over zealousness of government agencies.