By Festus Ahon
ASABA-THE Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Delta State has the raised alarm over what it described as the “disingenuous” plot by the Independent National Electoral commission, INEC, to manipulate and rig the forthcoming elections for President Muhammadu Buhari and the All progressives Congress, APC, through several devious strategies.
The state PDP, in a statement by its Publicity Secretary, Dr. Ifeanyi Osuoza, said: “Our thorough investigations reveal that the first ploy in the uncovered series of stratagems to tinker with the February 16 and March 2, elections, is a deceptive tactic designed to make President Buhari and the APC candidates gain the upper hand through the underhand manipulation of pre-loading and stuffing of the card peaders before accreditation with pre-determined names of fictitious voters.
“In other words, the import of the plot is to manipulate the smart card readers so as to substitute biometric accreditation with manual verification of already pre-loaded names thus paving way for mass rigging and allocation of fictitious votes for President Buhari and other APC candidates during the elections.
“In addition to this brazen plot, we also have it on good authority that the ultimate plan of the supposed independent electoral umpire is to allegedly swap the original result sheets at the collation centres, all of which is part of the grand desperation to manipulate the electoral process, shortchange the will of the people and rig the election in favour of the unpopular Buhari and the APC candidates.”
Osuoza, in another statement said: “We want to state loud and clear and with unflinching authority, that the Delta State PDP, has no doubt whatsoever that this information is authentic and incontrovertible and we hereby use this medium to caution INEC to be extremely careful and conduct a free, fair, transparent and credible election, even as we advise the electoral umpire to desist from any untoward acts that may potentially damage it’s credibility as an independent conductor and engender an avoidable conflict that can heat up the Isoko nation dangerously and explode into a crisis that may jeopardise the democratic process and uncontrollably.
“Let’s us confirm categorically that our candidate, Okuweh Ogor, is a fearless, courageous and distinguished member of the House of Representative, who has built an outstanding reputation as one of the pillars of Nigeria’s democracy and given the Isoko nation quality representation over the years. He is not only poised to win the February 16, National Assembly election for the Isoko Federal constituency seat once again, but is fully primed, capable and unequivocally ready to continue to deliver the dividends of democracy to his beloved Isoko people.
“We therefore, strongly call on INEC not to manipulate or declare a doctored result for Isoko Federal Constituency, in obedience to the instruction of the APC, but to maintain its independence and neutrality and ensure a level playing ground where the will of the people will be upheld at the end of the day. The PDP is fully ready and prepared to protect and defend the rights of our candidate and all Deltans to elect the representatives of their choice at all levels.”