Posted by News Express | 9 November 2014 | 3,086 times
FORMER Governor of Lagos State, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, yesterday, accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of colluding with the presidency to rig the forthcoming 2015 general elections.
At a press briefing in Lagos, Tinubu affirmed that the collection of Permanent Voters Card (PVC) exercise in Lagos has failed.
He wondered why INEC could not get the process right in four years, pointing out that the de- listing of voters in Lagos, hitches and seeming failures were deliberate to pave way for rigging of the election.
The APC national leader flanked by the Chairman of APC, Lagos State, Otunba Henry Ajomale and other members of the party in Lagos, said, “This Permanent Voters Collection exercise has failed and it is not acceptable. We will consider it as a rigging exercise practised. INEC has colluded with the presidency, the opposing party to rig this election from the data to the end.”
According to him, “If for four years you are unable to be ready with the permanent voters card for those who are already in record, and you are at this last minute, few months to the election you are still not ready with the voters cards in these 20 local government areas, you have not published the figures of those who were left out of the system as a result of one fault or the other, no disclosures to them.
“You have not been able to rectify the anomalies, irregularities that might be involved. You have not been able by now to even start the exercise of those who are 18 years and above that should be captured and be given the right to vote.
“And you will have 30 days minimum according to Electoral Act to display the comprehensive voters register. If you have four years for this exercise and four to five months to this election you are still giving excuses.”
Tinubu who queried why INEC reduced the number of registered voters in Lagos to 4.8million challenged the electoral body to publish the names of those who took part in double registration, adding that INEC itself has no right to disqualify anybody on that basis since it is not the court of law.
According to him, “INEC must publish names of close to two million voters excluded INEC is not the court of law. You cannot exclude Nigerians from exercising their franchise. You cannot automatically without the court of law disqualify them. If you fail to publish and give reason you are also violating their constitutional rights.”
The visibly disturbed Tinubu noted that “INEC told us initially that the exercise will cover 20 local governments in the state but 48 hours before exercise started INEC said they are ready for only 11 local governments.”
He added, “Rather than boycott the exercise, we tolerated the frustrations and appeal to our people to go ahead with the 11 local governments. We will protect our rights. We have appealed to our party members to be patient. If we have to hit the streets and complain to INEC, we will let them know. We are making our views known to logical minds. We will report this matter to national headquarters of our party of which I am a member.”
He said the one day extension announced by the INEC is inadequate, stressing that the problem is beyond what the Resident Electoral Commission (REC) in Lagos State can cope with.
Reading the position of the party, APC publicity secretary Lagos State, Mr. Joe Igbokwe, said, “INEC has failed in the ongoing distribution of Permanent Voter Card (PVC).”
Also at the press conference were Prince Murphy Adetoro, Abiodun Faleke, Women leader Mrs. Kemi Nelson, Chief Mutiu Are, and State Treasurer Mrs. Olasunbo Ajose.
Adapted from The Nation
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