As residents protest allege vote-buying plan
By Olasunkanmi Akoni
All Progressives Congress, APC, Lagos has raised the alarm over an alleged plot by the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to disrupt the by-elections for Lagos East Senatorial district and the Lagos State House of Assembly for Kosofe 2 slated for this Saturday.
This happened as residents of Lagos East Senatorial District have alleged PDP of perfecting plans to buy a vote with N5, 000 in the senatorial bye-election scheduled to hold Saturday, December.
Publicity Secretary of APC, Lagos, Mr. Seye Oladejo, raised the alarm in a statement released on Thursday.
Mr. Tokunbo Abiru, immediate past Executive Director, Polaris Bank, is the APC candidate for the East Senatorial District bye-election.
According to Oladejo, Our attention has been drawn to certain developments that are capable of disrupting the by-elections for Lagos East Senatorial district and the Lagos State House of Assembly for Kosofe 2 slated for this Saturday.
“The members of APC in the areas where the elections will be conducted have observed the unusual mobilization of hoodlums and miscreants from within and outside the state to disrupt the electoral process in polling areas where the PDP will likely return poor results.
Similarly, arrangements have been concluded to buy votes which negate the provision of the electoral laws.
Our intelligence revealed the conclusion to pay the sum of N5,000 per vote to undermine the process.
“Therefore, we are calling on the security agents to be vigilant to arrest any situation that is capable of disrupting the electoral process and INEC to remain impartial and deliver on their responsibility to the nation.
“Our members and supporters are hereby enjoined to protect their votes in the best interest of our nascent democracy. ”
Also, in separate statements, the residents alleged that their findings showed that the PDP and its senatorial candidate for Lagos East bye-election, Mr. Babatunde Gbadamosi had set machinery to spend a huge amount of money to buy votes and cause confusion.
Specifically, Mr.Jimoh Hamzat alleged that he was aware of the PDP’s plan to buy a vote with N5, 000 to win the bye-election at all cost, which according to him, would be resisted and frustrated.
Hamzat, an Ikorodu resident, warned against any attempt by the main opposition party “to buy votes on the day of the bye-election. We are waiting for them. We will resist any plot to manipulate the outcome of the bye-election.”
He, therefore, urged the Nigeria Police to investigate the allegation that the PDP was allegedly planning to pay each eligible voter N5, 000 to gain an advantage in the Lagos East bye-election already rescheduled for Saturday.
Protesting PDP’s alleged vote-buying plot, a youth leader in Bariga, Mr. Basheer Martins acknowledged that it “has come to our notice that the leaders of the PDP are planning on vote-buying.
“It’s extremely annoying to think that there are individuals out there wanting to take advantage of the people by trying to infringe on their voting rights and the voting process. I think this is completely appalling and relatively unacceptable.
“This is not the first time such allegation is taking the centre stage towards electioneering period. I strongly urge the INEC and security apparatus to be on the look and protect the votes of the people. We all know whom the masses are yearning for,” he noted.
In his own statement, an Epe resident, Mr. Olatunde Giwa alleged that most agents of the PDP had been harassing peace-loving people, which he argued, could lead to violence and hijacking of ballot boxes on the day of the bye-election.
Giwa, also, alleged that the PDP agents “have been wooing unsuspecting voters, even going as far as collecting their permanent voters’ cards (PVCs) with a promise to give each of them N5, 000.
“The INEC should take necessary measures to frustrate their plot. The security operatives should be on alert to protect the decision of the people. On our part, we are ready to resist all agents of electoral malpractices. We are peaceful people, but will not allow anti-democratic forces to steal the mandate of the people,” he said.
Disturbed by the plot, Olawunmi Oguntade asked the security agencies, especially the Department of State Services (DSS) to look into allegations and come up with measures to avert any plot for vote-buying during the process.
According to her, the public conduct of the PDP agents suggests that they have some hidden plans. But the people of Lagos East will monitor their votes and resist those who have been paid to buy votes or disrupt the process.