By Steve Unegbu
Following the declaration as inconclusive of some state gubernatorial elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has accused the Chairman of the commission of playing the script of the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC).
INEC declared the elections in Bauchi, Adamawa, Sokoto, and Plateau, where the PDP was leading from the results announced so far while the electoral process was suspended in Rivers State.
Addressing a press conference in Abuja on Monday, Kola Ologbondiyan, National Publicity Secretary and Director, Media & Publicity PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation, decried the action of the electoral umpire “in states where the PDP is in clear lead.”
The PDP insisted that INEC, under Prof. Yakubu, has become “overtly partisan, surrendered its independence to the APC and carries on as a compromised umpire with obnoxious impunity, thereby sending signals of being heavily bribed by the APC to alter results for its candidates.”
The PDP said it has full intelligence of how INEC was acting on instructions from the Buhari Presidency and the APC in orchestrating unwholesome situations and declaring already concluded governorship elections in Sokoto, Adamawa, Bauchi, Plateau as well as other states as inconclusive, immediately it becomes obvious that the PDP was set to win.
According to the party spokesman, this also informed the foisting of unexplainable stoppage and delays in the announcement of already collated results in other states where the PDP was clearly leading the race, from the results so far declared at the polling units.
He said PDP has also been informed of how INEC was now seeking ways to use the situation to aid the APC to alter the results and announce APC candidates as winners in the elections clearly led by the PDP just as it did in the 2018 Osun State governorship election.
He added: “In some of the states like Rivers, the PDP has information of plots by APC to leverage on the declaration by INEC to unleash more violence in the state and push for an isolated election where they can bring in more security forces to concentrate on forcefully taking over the state.
“Already, in Rivers State, INEC is under heavy pressure from the Director General of the Buhari Campaign Organisation and Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, to post out and replace the State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) as well as the Administrative Secretary.
“This will be totally unacceptable, completely provocative and shall be firmly resisted by the people even if the totality of our nation’s security is deployed to Rivers State.
“This is more so as results of all the state assembly elections in Rivers state have been declared and winners had emerged.”
The PDP, therefore, cautioned Yakubu and his INEC to perish the thoughts of altering any figures for the APC and to immediately announce our winning results in these states and others where our candidates clearly won, going by the results already declared at the polling units, wards and local government collation.
He declared: “Anything short of this will attract the legitimate wrath of the people.
“This is because Nigerians are already aware that elections have been concluded in these states; results have been collated and declared at the polling units, ward and local government collation centres and all returning officers and political parties conclusively have the figures.
“Prof. Yakubu must have noted how his name is becoming synonymous to electoral manipulations, among Nigerians, and the fact that our citizens and international community hold him responsible for the rigging of the Presidential and other elections for the APC.
“Today, the majority of Nigerians and the global democratic institutions are questioning the state of our democracy and electoral processes, which have been under siege under the supervision of President Buhari and Prof. Mahmood Yakubu.”
“In the light of these INEC’s manipulative tendencies,” the PDP, therefore, charged its leaders, teeming members and lovers of democracy in the affected states to immediately commence a march to INEC offices and use all legitimate means to protect our mandate as freely given by the people at the polling units across the nation.
Ologbodiyan said the move was not to cause anarchy but to protest votes.