•Says Nigeria’s democracy is now endangered under a partisan cloud
By Emmanuel Aziken, Political Editor
The People’s Democratic Party, PDP has faulted President Muh-ammadu Buhari for quickly congratulating Mr. Godwin Obaseki on his declaration as winner of the Edo State governorship election, saying it is a reversal of his Inauguration Day declaration not to be beholden to anyone.
The PDP’s comment came in the face of strident condemnation by the state chapter of the PDP of the declaration of Mr. Obaseki as the winner of the election. The PDP’s candidate, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu in a press conference in the hours leading to the declaration on Thursday had alleged subterfuge on the part of the Independent National Electoral Commission and the All Progressives Congress, APC saying that the results were cooked up ahead of the election. He also asserted that the results did not even reflect the huge turnout of the people on the premise that those who cooked the result did not envisage the huge turnout.
Edo PDP in a statement also issued by its spokesman, Chris Enehikare noted several incidents of disruption of collation in places where PDP showed strong dominance, the open inducement of voters with money to vote and the willing collaboration of some electoral officers to allow what the party described as an electoral heist.
The assertions were denied by APC officials who challenged the PDP to prove its case in court.
Meanwhile, the national spokesman of the PDP, Prince Dayo Adeyeye in a statement issued yester-day faulted President Buhari’s congratulation saying the president had not shown himself to be a father of all especially given that he had in the past not congratulated PDP candidates who won governorship elections.
He said: “President Buhari’s congratulatory message to Godwin Obaseki has finally revealed his hand in the Edo Guber Election imbroglio. We note with sadness that he had never extended similar congratulatory messages or goodwill to PDP candidates who were victorious in various Elections since he assumed office.
“In Bayelsa State where his Party with the support of security agencies virtually declared war on Governor Seriake Dickson and the people of Bayelsa, the President refused to congratulate the PDP Candidate who against all odds managed to survive the APC onslaught. His aides claimed then that the President was not in the business of congratulating election winners.
Why the sudden change of heart now if we may ask? The only plausible explanation is that the President was eager to confer legitimacy on an otherwise badly flawed Election in which his Party acted like Shina Rambo, the notorious Armed Robber. Only that this time they were robbing the people of their votes.
“The action of the President belies his statement that he belongs to nobody but belongs to everybody . The President has shown where he belongs. We recall that President Jonathan dutifully never failed to congratulate opposition candidates who won elections during his tenure including Adams Oshiomhole. That is what is expected of a statesman.
“We did not lose the Gubernatorial Election in Edo State. We can therefore not be described as “bad losers” according to the APC State Chairman in Edo State, Anselm Ojezua. We were robbed by very shameless election riggers.
“We fully support the Edo Chapter of the PDP in the total rejection of the election results. We also fully endorse their determination to employ all legitimate means to reclaim their stolen mandate.
Finally we wish to warn Nigerians that our democracy is in grave danger.
Since the advent of this administration, no election has been free and fair. We go for elections as if we are going to war; and virtually all elections conducted by INEC have been either inconclusive or blatantly rigged.
“Today Rivers State has no representation in the National Assembly. No thanks to the powers that be. If we do not collectively rise to resist this anti people onslaught we might as well say bye bye to democracy.”