Abuja – The All Progressives Congress (APC) opposed the holding of a “supplementary poll” in Anambra State saying it had substantial evidence compelling the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to cancel the November 16 governorship poll.
"Our party has provided incontrovertible and more than substantial evidence to show that what took place on November 16th is a parody of election. What other evidence can be more substantial than the fact that INEC, in conducting the Nov. 16th election, failed to comply with the provisions of the Electoral Act?
"What other evidence can be more compelling than the INEC Chairman's admission of compromise by a top official of the commission? If Jega's statement that the election fell short of what the commission had expected and prepared for, what else could be more substantial?” the opposition party said in a statement issued on Sunday by its Interim National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed."
Slamming INEC Chairperson, Prof Attahiru Jega, for the chaotic poll, Mohammed listed a number of concerns he said warranted a re-run.
“Jega's unforced admission that a senior official of the Commission has been financially induced to compromise the election in the Idemili North Local Government Area which has over 173 000 registered voters. This is very serious because this Local Government is the stronghold of the APC candidate, Senator Chris Ngige, and the fact that in the 2011 Senatorial Election Senator, Ngige scored over 80 percent of all votes cast in the Local Government,” stated Mohammed.
Other evidence, he said, include the decision to use the students of the Nnamdi Azikiwe University, in direct violation of INEC guidelines, as Presiding Officers for the election instead of the trained ad hoc staff and the use of the staff of the university as officers even though the running mate of the APGA candidate was until his nomination a professor in the same institution.
He said the electoral material meant for the known strongholds of the APC candidate were deliberately sent to wrong wards or polling units, thereby creating confusion and frustration.
APC alleged that voters' registers, especially in known APC strongholds, were tampered with to remove the names of many registered voters, thereby disenfranchising them and result sheets were not supplied in many polling booths, especially in known strongholds of the APC.
APC also alleged collation of results was not done at polling booth units or wards.
The party added that Senator Chris Ngige, the APC candidate, complained in writing to INEC that Prof Chukwuemeka Onukogu should not be allowed to conduct the November 16th election given his alleged bias and animosity towards him (Ngige).
“If the above reasons are not considered substantial enough, then one is left with no choice but to conclude that either Prof. Jega is decidedly being naive about the extent and scope of the multi-layer rigging perpetrated under his nose on November 16th or he has chosen to align with election marauders who are acting the larger script of the presidency.
"Either way, the buck stops on Jega’s desk or he bears the ultimate responsibility for the failure of the November 16 election. Therefore, he must summon the courage to ameliorate the situation by ordering a fresh election. Failure to do that will mean that he has simply abdicated his responsibility and ruined the people's confidence in the ability of the commission he heads to remain an unbiased umpire,” Mohammed said.
- CAJ News