By Suzan Edeh
Bauchi—The Bauchi State chapter of the Democratic People’s Party, DPP, has said that the state government was not interested in conducting the local government election in the state, contrary to the impression being created by the authorities over the issue.
State Chairman of DPP, Hajiya Sa’adatu Mahmuda made the allegation while briefing newsmen at the Nigeria Union of Journalists, NUJ, press centre. Bauchi, yesterady.
Mahmuda said: “Since the inception of the present administration in 2007, it has conducted local government election once. Since then, it has continued to set up care-taker committees which were usually appointed by the government. The State House Assembly has now reduced the tenure of the council chairmen to two and half years which is equal to promoting undemocratic tendency at the grass- roots. This is unacceptable. It does not show sincerity or seriousness on the part of government.”
She also alleged that the PDP-led government only appointed members of the state electoral body about six months ago, without even having the courtesy of informing the opposition about the development, meaning that it had no intention to conduct the council polls.
According to her, “since political parties are the major stakeholders in every elections they must be carried along in all the preparations of the electoral body but, they are not sincere; they will continue to keep the people in dark.”
However, in his reaction, the Chairman of the state Electoral Commission, Abdulmumini Kundak dismissed the DPP’s allegation as mischievous.
He said,“ If they are sincere they should visit the electoral body to clarify things for themselves but we explained our position in the media. The state government is committed to the conduct of a hitch free local government election in the state. We have made all the necessary arrangements and put all logistics in place to ensure that council polls are conducted.
The state government is presently financing the training of electoral officers and taking full responsibilities for all the activities of the electoral body. If the government is not willing to conduct the council election, it would have done nothing for the electoral body.”