- PDP has accused President Buhari of rigging Saturday, February 23, presidential election
- Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to Buhari on media and publicity, had on Sunday, March 17, said that the president would not intervene in the supplementary election
- Kola Ologbondiyan, the PDP's national publicity secretary, however, said Buhari’s position was a direct confession that the presidency used its overbearing influence to rig the election
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has alleged President Muhammadu Buhari of rigging the Saturday, February 23, presidential election.
Nigerian Tribune reports that the party said President Buhari's statement that he would not intervene on behalf of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the supplementary election scheduled in states where the gubernatorial elections were declared inconclusive by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) was an affirmation that he rigged the presidential election.
Legit.ng gathered that the main opposition party said that President Buhari’s position was a direct confession that the presidency used its overbearing influence to rig the February 23 presidential election.
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The party in a statement issued in Abuja on Monday, March 18, by its national publicity secretary, and director, media and publicity presidential campaign organisation, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party maintained that President Muhammadu Buhari’s position was also a fresh subterfuge to divert public attention from APC’s rigging plots ahead of the supplementary elections.
It would be recalled that the presidency has rejected criticism from members of the ruling APC who frowned at his failure to intervene in favour of the party in states where gubernatorial elections were declared inconclusive.
It had noted in a statement issued in Abuja on Sunday, March 17, by Garba Shehu, the senior special assistant to the president on media and publicity, that such party members expected the president to interfere because past presidents had done so in the past, vowing that President Buhari, having sworn to defend the constitution, would not go against it by such interference in the electoral process.
But according to the PDP, the presidency’s confession that APC members were mounting pressure on President Buhari to help them to rig the supplementary elections further confirms the Buhari presidency’s manipulative and rigging capacity, including militarisation of the electoral process, instigating of violence and alteration of results, as were freely used by the APC in the presidential election.
The PDP alerted Nigerians, especially those in states where the supplementary elections have been scheduled to hold, to be wary of the antics of the Buhari presidency, as it has never been committed to a free, fair and credible election.
The statement read: “Nigerians can recall that ahead of the Presidential and National Assembly elections, President Buhari had promised to allow for a free, fair, transparent and credible process, only for his Presidency and party, the APC, to engage in downright manipulations at INEC, deployment of military and thugs to intimidate and suppress voters, as well as outright alteration of results delivered from the polling units.
“President Buhari cannot exonerate himself of the harm inflicted on our polity by the deployment of soldiers in the 2019 general elections, as nobody deploys the military except the President and Commander-in-Chief.
“Now that President Buhari, in his official capacity, has come out to state that he will not intervene in the March 23 supplementary election; we ask, is Mr President assuring Nigerians that any ‘soldier’ seen directly involving in the rerun election is fake and should be treated as such?”
The PDP charged the military to note the import of the statement by the presidency and steer clear of the supplementary elections.
The PDP also cautioned INEC officials to note that Nigerians are very eager about the outcome of the governorship supplementary elections, “given that the PDP is already leading in these states. Nigerians are not ready to accept any results that do not reflect the reality of our victory, which is already known to all.”
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Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that the governor of Plateau state, Simon Lalong, on Monday, March 18, declared that he was not jittery over the governorship election re-run fixed by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for March 23.
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