2023 general elections may not hold, says Vatsa
All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain, Jonathan Vatsa, has raised doubts over the conduct of a general election in the country amid the security challenges.
He stated in Minna yesterday that until the current security situation across the country improves, Nigerians should not expect any election in 2023.
According to the Commissioner for Information and Tourism in former Governor Mu’azu Babangida Aliyu’s administration, if government decides to go ahead with the election amid the worsening security situation across the country, such election will not be credible.
In his statement entitled ‘As the nation bleed, can Nigerians have credible elections in 2023’, he expressed worry over the country’s plunge into the pond of insecurity, with attendant loss of lives and government seemed to have been overwhelmed.
“No part of this country is safe. People are being killed like flies. They have abandoned their ancestral home for fear and have no hope of returning soon,” he stated.
Vatsa, a former Publicity Secretary of APC in Niger State, believes that until the security problem is addressed and peace returns to towns and villages, any attempt to conduct election in 2023 will amount to deceit.
“Nigerians should know that such election would never be credible. It will amount to sitting in one place and writing election result, and the people will definitely resist such manipulation,” he said.
The Coordinator, Public Affairs, to Governor Abubakar Bello opined that no credible election could be conducted in Niger State without addressing the issue of banditry, which has brought the state on its knees, pointing out: “Six or seven of the 25 local councils of the state are under siege by bandits. So which credible election will you conduct in such local council without addressing the security challenges there. It is not possible today. There are over 20,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) across these local councils.
“The state is overwhelmed with this situation and nobody is listening to the governor. So, if you want to conduct elections in these affected communities, where are the voters?”
He, however, advised President Muhammadu Buhari to act fast because “the masses who voted for him in 2015 and 2019 can no longer sleep in their houses; they can no longer go to their farms. The country is bleeding and the poor people are mostly affected.”
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