[contextly_auto_sidebar id=”0MubmR6Am8B0OZXbTTiX1JmEGZkd74Fu”]A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ekiti state, Mr Segun Osinkolu has urged security officials to take drastic actions against fraudulent INEC officials in the forthcoming Bayelsa poll.Osinkolu’s call comes following the alleged complicity of some INEC staff in the manipulations of the 2015 Rivers and Akwa Ibom state governorship polls.
The APC chief said electoral malpractice constitutes a great threat to the growth of democracy and national peace especially when those saddled with the statutory responsibility of conducting elections and collating the people’s will, freely and willingly perpetrate electoral fraud.
He warned the commission to guard against a repeat of the alleged malpractices, threatening that APC will not expect anything less
than a “transparent, free and fair election that represents the true and collective wish of the Bayelsans”.
“Several evidence were brought before the election petition tribunals that tried the petitions filed by APC governorship candidates in Rivers and Akwa Ibom, Hon Dakuku Peterside and Mr Umana Umana respectively to the effects that INEC top functionaries were involved in manipulations of figures.
“The fact that elections in those states had been annulled by competent courts of law were suffice for us to conclude that there are
bad and highly compromised INEC staff in those two states. And the security agencies must beam their searchlights on them.
“I want to put on record that PDP having the erroneous impression that the southsouth states with the exception of Edo, are their natural habitats and strongholds no longer hold water, because APC is now a darling party at the centre and President Muhammadu Buhari’s magnetic force is drawing everybody to APC,” the chieftain opined.
“Before the 2015 general election, virtually all the states in the north central with the exception of Kwara, were being controlled by PDP. But today, the APC is controlling everywhere. The only one left for PDP, Kogi state has just been won by APC. So, I am confident that APC can win election in Bayelsa.
“I want to advise the commission and its ad hoc staff to see Saturday’s elections as a veritable avenue to redeem their image and atone for their sins.
“They should see this election as a national assignment and their loyalty should be to the constitution they swore to protect, rather
than to any money bag or highest bidder, who is desperate to win election,” Osinkolu stressed.
The APC chieftain added that Prof Mahmood Yakubu-led INEC should not only display unwavering patriotism to the country, but must be seen to be neutral in every election for Nigerians, electorate in particular, to have implicit confidence in the commission.
This Day reports that Osinkolu urged security agencies to monitor all INEC staff to forstall any manipulation as witnessed in some states during the last general election.
Meanwhile, barely two days to the Bayelsa gubernatorial poll, tension has gripped the state, following news of an attack by some unidentified gunmen.
The gunmen who some say were kidnappers allegedly killed an APC chieftain in Yenagoa.