PDP demands INEC chair’s resignation, calls for international sanctions
The Peoples Democratic Party has demanded that the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu, resigned for violation of the provisions of the Electoral Act and alleged manipulation and alteration of the February 25 presidential election results.
The PDP also demanded that the Inspector General of Police and the Director General of the Directorate of State Services immediately commence investigations into the electoral violations and manipulations by INEC with the view to prosecuting Yakubu and other INEC officials for electoral offences.
The PDP disclosed this at a press conference held at its headquarters on Friday in Abuja.
INEC declared the candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Bola Tinubu, President-elect which the opposition PDP and Labour Party rejected over claims of numerous electoral violations.
Speaking at the press conference, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Debo Ologunagba, further remarked that the party demanded the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission to open an investigation into allegations that certain top officials of INEC were heavily compromised financially to manipulate the electoral process.
Ologunagba said, “The PDP demands that the Chairman of INEC, Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu, immediately steps down from office, having abused the confidence and dashed the hope of millions of Nigerians as well as political parties and the international community for a free, fair and credible election.
“His exit as chairman will be the first step towards sanitising the electoral commission and restoring the confidence of Nigerians especially as the nation prepares for the rescheduled March 18, 2023 governorship and state assembly elections.
“The PDP demands that the Inspector General of Police and the Director General of the Directorate of State Services immediately commence investigations into the electoral violations and manipulations by INEC with the view to prosecuting Prof. Mahmoud Yakubu and other officials of the commission for electoral offences.
“In the same vein, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission should open an investigation into allegations that certain top officials of INEC were heavily compromised financially to manipulate the electoral process.
The spokesperson of the party pointed out that the PDP had also reviewed the latest scheme by INEC to reconfigure the BVAS devices to deny Nigerians and political parties, especially the PDP and its candidate, access to relevant information required to prosecute their case at the Presidential Election Tribunal.
The spokesperson maintained that it was also obvious that the commission’s boss deliberately sabotaged the uploading and transmission of results directly from the polling units in favour of the APC “as now abundantly exposed in the pictorial and video evidence of compromised results sheets in many parts of the country.
He wondered why the INEC chairman “rushed” to announce and declare alleged manipulated results that were not transmitted directly from the polling units to INEC’s server/website and ignored the objections and complaints raised during the collation of results in deliberate violation of the provisions of Section 64 (4) (a) and (b), 64 (6) (a)-(d), and 65 (1) (c) of the Electoral Act. 2022.
He added, “For emphasis, while Section 64 (4) (a) and (b) expressly require the INEC Chairman as the Chief Returning Officer to announce only results that were transmitted directly from the polling units, Sections 64 (6) (a)-(d) and 65 (1) (c) compel INEC, in the case of disputes, complaints or objections regarding a collated result or the result of an election from any polling unit, to take steps including the review of collation where they are made contrary to the provisions of the law, regulations, guidelines and manual issued for the election.
The image maker also observed that by violating these provisions of the Electoral Act, 2022, as well as INEC’s regulations, guidelines and manual for the election, Yakubu is not only culpable of serious electoral offence but also “betrayed, thrashed and threw overboard the trust,” confidence and hope Nigerians reposed in him and the electoral commission to deliver a free, fair and credible election in the country.
Going further he stated that Yakubu’s stay in office was capable of paving the way for the suppression, tampering and destruction of critical evidence required to further expose the infractions and violations by the commission at the Presidential Election Tribunal.
He stated that the PDP notes the reports of various international bodies in disapproval of actions by the leadership of INEC in undermining democracy in the conduct of the February 25 presidential and National Assembly elections.
The party, while urging Nigerians to remain calm but very alert as the party continues to take steps to retrieve its mandate at the Presidential Election Tribunal, also urged the international community to immediately impose sanctions including travel restrictions on the INEC chairman and other top officials of the commission for their roles in “compromising democracy” in Nigeria.