Arewa forum wants polls shifted, CNPP disagrees
Following the Court of Appeal’s declaration of Eyitayo Jegede as the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s candidate, the Arewa Youth Consultative Forum (AYCF) has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to shift the polls.
The forum’s president, Shettima Yerima, said at a press conference that holding the election tomorrow “would amount to wasting time and an impending danger under the existing tense situation in the state.”
According to him, if the INEC goes ahead with the election, it could cause an avoidable national calamity, which would be counter-productive for a country that is under economic recession.
According to him, “The AYCF was disturbed by the inconsistency of the INEC in the election, as well as the alleged old and embarrassing image of an unorganised and partisan umpire levelled against it.
“The electoral body has disappointed our compatriots by insisting that it would hold the election tomorrow, in total disregard to the charged atmosphere and palpable tension, which could trigger a breach of peace in the state.
According to the forum, the way that some elections have been held in the country, especially in Edo State, showed that they were planned to favour the interest of some government officials.
“Nowhere in the world, except in this country, is an electoral body given the powers to do as it pleased. The trend is an ill wind against justice, fairness and equity in democratic terms.
Yerima said there was no justification for tomorrow’s polls because the residents had been thrown into fear, following the alleged unpreparedness by the INEC.
Meanwhile, the Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) has urged the INEC to go ahead with the election.
A statement by the CNPP’s Acting National Publicity Secretary, Wale Okunniyi, said the situation in the state did not warrant a postponement.
“The CNPP urges all political parties in the country to imbibe the crucial tenets of internal democracy so as to harmoniously elect their candidates for election. This is the only way to avoid over-heating the polity.”
Okunniyi said it was regrettable that the judiciary and the electoral body were always at the receiving end each time the political parties failed to put their houses in order.
He warned against the intra-party wrangling and the do-or-die tussle among the parties participating in the election.