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Poll shift: Group cautions politicians over unfounded allegations against INEC officials

..As COSEG urges S’West to maintain peace

By Olasunkanmi  Akoni

The Transition Monitoring Group, TMG, has cautioned political gladiators to desist from further heating up the polity with the numerous allegations being peddled against Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, officials and security agencies.

INEC boss, Mahmood Yakubu

The group, in a statement on Tuesday, by it’s Chairperson, Dr. Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, expressed concern about attempts to damage the credibility of some of the National Commissioners of INEC.

According to Akiyode-Afolabi: “TMG is concerned about attempts to damage the credibility of some of the National Commissioners of INEC who over time have proved themselves as worthy ambassadors of Nigeria. We are more concerned in particular, about the petition submitted by the Chairman of All Progressives Congress, APC, Akwa Ibom chapter, calling for the removal of the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, in Akwa Ibom State, Mike Igini, for alleged partisanship and other sundry offences ahead of the general polls in the country”, said TMG

The group further stated that Igini had since refuted the allegations, saying that the allegations deserved scrutiny from the authorities if Nigerians were to get a sense of closure from the terrible events of the recent past when politicians subverted the democratic choices and aspirations of Nigerians.

“Nevertheless, the call for the removal and probe of REC Igini and other INEC top officials few days to the general elections on unfounded allegations would only amount to a shady scheme to undermine the credibility of the electoral process and unnecessary meddling in the affairs of INEC by the ruling party.

“The current INEC has a reputation of having some of the finest brains in the country in their midst and this should be appreciated by all Nigerians. Of course, the postponement of last Saturday’s election may have affected the perception of Nigerians, but we must support INEC to deliver a credible electoral process. Any attempt to rupture its credibility will affect the democratic journey of this country.”

The group concluded thus: “We also call on former Head of State, Abdulsalami Abubakar’s Peace Commission to step up its game to ensure the commitment of political parties to the peace agreement and pact signed for peaceful elections to prevent any form of violence and malpractices that could trigger pre-or post -election conflicts.

COSEG calls for peace

Also, Coalition Of Oodua Self determination Groups, COSEG, in a statement on Monday, in Lagos,by its Chairman, Ifedayo Ogunlana has urged the people of the South West to keep calm and support INEC despite its little shortcoming as regards Saturday presidential election postponement, saying, it is ready to bestow peaceful and fair election. The group also urged them to maintain peace and shun violence for the sake of Nigeria.

COSEG particularly, called on Yoruba people not to be apprehensive with the postponement  which he said would have defined and established where the race truly belongs despite the lies being peddled by some certain anti yoruba groups who refused to promote the interest of Yoruba’s because of their bruised egos and personality fight and interests.

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According to Ogunlana: “We are really sad and concerned with the postponement of last Saturday presidential election because of the huge efforts people have put into it.  However, we believe so much that if the election has been held, the whole world would have appreciated the genuity of the Yoruba people who so much believe in their own no matter the case. Our continuous role as the promoter of the race would have been appreciated.

“We shall continue to call the Yoruba to be ready to use their PVC to usher in Buhari/Osibajo because they have done well. Can we abandon Osibajo our own blood in the middle of the race, we cannot, no matter the fake and tales being peddled from the pot of hell.”

The group therefore, called on Yoruba’s not to be dismay or disappointed with the postponement but be ready to use their PVC to take a decision about their future.

According to COSEG: “We call on the Yoruba people in the southwest and outside the southwest not to be disappointed with the postponement, we should rather as usually see it as a blessing to the race, it will avail us opportunity to once again reflect and decide to chose between corruption and accountability, between development and retrogression, between hope and hopelessness, between continuity of trust and love for our race cum hatred, banishment and distrust of our race.

“These are lines we should pick from. We should therefore, be counted where original and revered Yoruba’s are.

“As for us, we shall not stop reiterating that we shall vote for our blood, we shall for our hope who we revered so much. Osinbajo is a great, humble, intelligent and Godly man who we know means well for our race and at no time has he back stabbed us.”

The group, while appreciating the APC Lagos gubernatorial candidate, Mr. Babajide Sanwoolu for aligning with COSEG  with a call on Yoruba people to vote massively for Buhari/Osinbajo next week Saturday.


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