By Chris Ochayi
The Nigerian Peoples Congress, NPC, has said the Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, Professor Attahiru Jega cannot conduct free, fair, transparent and credible elections, following his poor handling of the ongoing compilation of voters’ cards.
National Chairman of NPC, Prince Ngozi Emioma who made the remarks in a statement issued Sunday in Abuja, regretted that the controversies trailing the exercise across the country was a classical example that Prof. Jega cannot cope with the rigour of general elections.
According to Prince Emioma, “despite his laudable credentials, INEC Chairman Prof. Attahiru Jega may not be the political messiah Nigerians expected to conduct free, fair, transparent and credible elections. The poor handling of the voter registration exercise across the country is a classical example that he cannot cope with the rigour of general elections.
“One week extension of the voter registration will not be enough to register all eligible voters going by the snail speed INEC has conducted the exercise in the past two weeks. It is obvious that millions of Nigerians will be disfranchised.
“The newspapers publication of photographs of men and women fighting to get a “tally number” that would enable them to register in the order they arrived at a particular registration unit in Abuja showed the enthusiasm of the populace to participate in the exercise.
“It is also a shame that Nigerians have to fight to perform their civic duties, things that are taken for granted in most developing democracies in Africa where electoral materials and personnel are adequate.
“Jega’s request for additional N6.6 billion for the one-week extension of the voter registration clearly shows that he is not only shortsighted and incompetent but delights in taking Nigerians for a ride. It is sad that Jega has not justified the confidence the nation reposed in him. The N6.6 billion is a rip-off and should not be granted.”