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CNPP faults INEC over polls postponement


Willy Ezugwu

Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) has lamented the abrupt postponement of the federal elections on Saturday, February 16.The secretary general, Chief Willy Ezugwu, in a statement at the weekend, asked why an election that took the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) four years to prepare would be postponed at the 11th hour, despite assurances of readiness by the commission.

The inconsistencies associated with the preparation for the elections by the electoral umpire were part of a deliberate plot by anti-democratic forces in the country to thwart the elections, to derail the nation’s democracy.

According to Ezugwu, before now, there had been subtle musings about plan by some forces to enthrone an interim government on the country.His words: “It is becoming obvious that such forces have thrown their evil spanners into the democratic works to have a reason to carry out their clandestine agenda.

“These forces, we suspect, are the same that have carried out systematic arson that led to the destruction of electoral materials, including Permanent Voter’s Cards (PVCs), in different parts of the country few days to the election and the killings in Kaduna State on the eve of the election.

“Even when the rumour of plans to postpone the polls strongly permeated the air days to the election, the electoral umpire reiterated its readiness to go ahead with the exercise as scheduled. We are shocked that INEC suddenly postponed the election about five hours to time of commencement.“The ruling party and the INEC should be held accountable should our fears come to reality, as there might be another postponement of the re-scheduled February 23 national elections.”

CNPP, therefore, called on the international community and election observers to be on the alert, as discovery of already thumb-printed ballot papers and written result summary for an election that was yet to take place were part of efforts to rig, cause confusion and prepare ground for an interim government to be foisted on the country.“The CNPP and other democratic watchdogs will continue to painstakingly interrogate the electoral process with a view to exposing manipulations and electoral fraud capable of marring our hard-earned democracy,” the CNPP said.

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