Senator representing Kogi East Senatorial District, Jibrin Isah Echocho, has described as uncharitable and malicious reports linking him with a crisis that erupted at a betting centre at Ajiolo Ojaji, in Dekina Local Government Area of Kogi State.
In a statement he issued and made available to SKYBLAST TV in Abuja on Friday, the lawmaker, the Senate Committee Çhairman on Customs, wondered why some elements could try so hard to smear his name for political gains.
Reacting to several media reports which suggested that he was involved, he said the incident was completely unknown to him, adding that there was no basis to warrant him ordering the attack.
From his findings, after news of his involvement began to trend, he said it was discovered to be a disagreement among friends at a betting centre that snowballed into violence.
The statement read: “It is with great disappointment that I respond to these baseless accusations, which seem to be a desperate attempt by some politically motivated urchins to tarnish my reputation and discredit my service to the people of our great senatorial district.
“I want to set the record straight and clarify the events surrounding the incident.
“Contrary to the sensationalized and false accounts that have been propagated, the incident in question arose from a disagreement among some friends at a betting center.
“Regrettably, this dispute escalated into a violent altercation. My heart goes out to the victims of this unfortunate incident, and I extend my deepest sympathies to them and their families.
“Let me emphasize that I unequivocally condemn any form of violence or lawlessness. Such behaviour has no place in our society, and it is essential that we all work together to promote peace and understanding among our people.
“I implore those who seek to exploit this unfortunate situation for political gain to cease their efforts immediately.
“We must not allow divisive and malicious tactics to undermine the unity and progress of our community and I want to reiterate that I belong to everyone and will continue to work tirelessly to promote love, unity, and peace among my constituents and all Nigerians.
“My focus has always been on making a positive impact on the lives of our people, and I remain committed to this cause.
“During my visit to the victims of the fracas, I made a heartfelt plea to those who are attempting to use my name for political advantage to cease their actions.”
The lawmaker urged the constituents to eschew violence, stressing that, “violence only serves to weaken the very fabric of our society and does more harm than good.”
“I want to assure the people of my constituency that I will not be deterred by these false allegations. I will continue to serve you with dedication, integrity, and a commitment to our shared values.
“Together, we will overcome the challenges that confront us, and we will build a brighter and more prosperous future for all.”