2015 Polls: Political Parties divide as 16 parties & 5 presidential aspirants say YES

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26 registered political parties are divided over the calls for the postponement of the elections emerged in Abuja with 16 of them and five presidential candidates in support.

They told a news conference on Tuesday that they would boycott the polls if their opinions were not respected.

The parties include the United Democratic Party, the Citizen Peoples Party, the Peoples Party of Nigeria, the Action Alliance, the Peoples Democratic Congress, the Labour Party; and Unity Party of Nigeria.

Others are the Alliance for Democracy, the Democratic Peoples Party, the New Nigerian Peoples Party, the Peoples Party of Nigeria and the Independent Democrat.

The five presidential candidates at the briefing were Godson Okoye, Sam Okoye, C.O Allagoe, Tunde Anifowose and Ganiu Galadima.

The political parties said, “We the concerned leaders of political parties have observed some dangerous trends, which if not checked may negatively and adversely affect our democracy.”

The political parties premised their argument for the postponement on security, distribution of PVCs and people deserting their places of abode for their villages.

Okoye, who spoke on their behalf, called on the Federal Government to take necessary steps to provide adequate security for Nigerians to go out and collect their PVCs in order to be able to exercise their civic and constitutional duty.

He called on INEC to consider shifting the date of elections to sometime in March or April.

“We are not urging INEC to do anything that is unlawful, illegal or unconstitutional. It is unfortunately becoming clear by the day that most Nigerians appear not to be ready for election but are ready for violence,” he said.

He also flayed the United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, for meeting with only the presidential candidates of the APC Maj. Gen. Muhammadu Buhari and Jonathan in Lagos.

But at a different news conference, the presidential candidate of the United Progressive Party, Chekwas Okorie, condemned the call for the postponement of the elections.

Okorie described the call as a “mischievously contrived clamour.”

He said, “The reasons given by the proponents of the postponement that a great number of Nigerians will be disenfranchised having not been given their Permanent Voter Cards which will enable them to participate in the election is a contrived reason and to a large extent pedestrian.

“As we speak, over 80 per cent of registered voters have received their PVCs according to latest figures released by INEC and this may increase to 90 per cent or above after the close of distribution of PVCs on February 8 2015, as planned by INEC.”

Meanwhile, INEC has distributed 977,727 out of the 1,494169 PVCs received by its Ondo State office.

The state Resident Electoral Commissioner, Mr. Segun Agbaje, disclosed this to journalists in Abuja on Tuesday.

He said that the distribution of the cards to all the Local Government Areas in the state would end on Saturday.

Agbaje said,”We are preparing very well for the elections as we ought to do in line with the provisions of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended).

“All non-sensitive materials would be deployed in the LGAs before the end of the week as security arrangements for their movement are almost concluded.

“We received 1,494,169 PVCs out of which we have distributed 977,727, representing 65.4 per cent, remaining 516,442 representing 34.6 per cent.”

On other preparations for the elections, Agbaje said, ‘‘The training of electoral officers had been completed while that of Supervisory Presiding Officers started on February 2 and will end on February 4.”

According to him, the training of Presiding Officers and Assistant Presiding Officers will be between February 6 and 8.

He added that INEC in the state had set up an Election Day Operations Situation Room to directly receive complaints and enquiries from voters, observers, journalists and the general public on the days of the elections.

The numbers are 08142188630, 09021446492, 07055687657 and 08184765105.

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