February 9, 2023

PDP, APC clash over plot to scuttle polls

…APC in fresh plot to scuttle elections —PDP

…Fingers ruling party’s lawmakers as arrow heads

…Demands probe of N22.5bn APC cash swap deal

...We’re not afraid, APC denies scheming to postpone elections

By Omeiza Ajayi & John Alechenu

The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, said yesterday it has uncovered a fresh plot by the Tinubu Campaign to derail the forthcoming general elections, which is barely three weeks away.

But the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC, in a swift reaction, declared its readiness for the elections, dismissing reports that it was working behind the scenes to have the polls postponed by four weeks.

But PDP alleged that it had been made aware of the plot by APC lawmakers to reconvene the National Assembly under the guise of addressing issues of national importance in order to use incendiary remarks to further heat up the polity and derail the polls.

National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Debo Ologunagba, who disclosed this in a statement in Abuja, said the latest plot was one out of a series of orchestrated plots by the APC Presidential Campaign to derail the 2023 general elections and put the nation’s democracy in jeopardy.

Ologunagba said: “The PDP informs of the moves by the Tinubu Presidential Campaign to allegedly use certain compromised APC members in both Senate and House of Representatives to create tension in the polity and derail the conduct of the elections.

“There is credible intelligence of how the APC presidential candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, allegedly directed his cronies in the APC leadership of both chambers of the National Assembly to reconvene plenary and use the legislative chambers as platforms to promote incendiary speeches, with a view to overheating the polity and making it appear unconducive to conduct elections in the country.

“This is in furtherance of the alleged scheme by the APC Presidential Campaign to use all means, including APC leadership of the National Assembly, to orchestrate security situations that will justify its reported demands to postpone elections as a prelude to the derailment of the electoral process, having realised that it has no chance in the elections.”

The main opposition party noted that if, indeed, the APC leadership of both chambers of the National Assembly is concerned about the biting cash scarcity, they should publicly condemn the reported plot by APC leaders and its Presidential Campaign, to clandestinely swap a whopping N22.5 billion in old N1000 notes for new ones in Kano and Lagos states for the purpose of vote buying.

We’re not afraid, APC denies scheming to postpone elections

Reacting yesterday, APC spokesman, Felix Morka, said in a statement:  “The report is blatantly false and reckless, and bears no iota of credibility. Beyond its loud headline, the report offers no substantive justifying content aside from its intended purpose of misleading and causing needless anxiety and speculations regarding the upcoming elections.’’

Morka noted that the general election is a matter of extreme national importance bordering on national security and corporate integrity of the country.

The statement read:  “On record, under President Muhammadu Buhari’s leadership, our Party continues to wage the most extensive and vibrant campaign in the history of our nascent democracy seeking to elect our visionary Presidential Candidate, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, his running mate, Sen. Kashim Shettima and our Party’s governorship, national and state legislative flag bearers into office.

“This is in direct contrast to the lackluster and incoherent campaign of the opposition parties that have placed nothing before the electorate except their vile merchandise of lies, innuendoes and hate propaganda against the APC.”

“President Muhammadu Buhari has left no one in doubt as to his unshakable commitment to bequeathing a befitting legacy of credible, free and fair election, and has enacted unprecedented electoral reform and innovation that has placed our country in good stead to deliver 2023 general election and bolster our democratic consolidation.

“We stand ready for the general election, and remain confident that Nigerians will overwhelmingly renew our mandate in a peaceful, free and credible electoral contest”.