APC accuses PDP of plotting to recruit security personnel as polls’ officials
THE All Progressives Congress (APC) has raised the alarm over plans by the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to engage security personnel to work as ad-hoc members of staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to enable it rig the general elections billed to start on the 28th of this month.
The party also said that the President Jonathan-led government has allegedly perfected the plan to harass and intimidate supposed sponsors of the opposition party as part of ongoing efforts to cripple its activities.
In a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the party claimed that information at its disposal indicated that the security personnel were to be engaged to work as ad-hoc staff of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), but with the specific instructions to rig the polls.
The party, which described the unfolding development as disturbing since it is coming against the background of the role played by the military in rigging the 2014 Ekiti governorship election, said: “For example, there is a plan for at least 500 security agents to apply to work as ad-hoc INEC members of staff so they can rig for the PDP, while military and police uniforms are being sewn in a PDP-controlled state in the South-West, with a view to making them available for PDP thugs to wear on election day so that they can harass and intimidate the opposition.
‘’There is also the disturbing case of four senior officers of the State Security Service (SSS) who are being retained for some ignoble role during the general elections, even though they are already due for retirement. It is interesting that these officers, including three at the states and one at the headquarters of the SSS, are all from the South-East and the South-South, which the Jonathan-led administration considers its stronghold.
‘’Equally disturbing is the fact that a section of the security services has been making sensitive information available to certain PDP members, including a loose-lipped state governor, just to get at the opposition. This is sad because Nigeria is bigger than any political party,’’ the party said.
It, therefore, appealed to the security agencies to be non-partisan, professional and patriotic in carrying out their duties before, during and after the general elections.
On the plan to arrest the APC financiers, the party said the security agency could only target phantom financiers, since the APC, in reality, is being financed by Nigerians, and not money-bags.
It said: ‘’We made it clear early on that our party, which has now become a people-driven movement, is being bankrolled by ordinary Nigerians, who have contributed generously to the party through the platforms that we published in the newspapers for all to see.
‘’Though the Federal Government has used some national institutions to stifle our party’s fund-raising efforts, Nigerians have utilised the available platforms to make their donations. It is therefore a futile exercise for anyone to harass some innocent people for supposedly financing the APC.”
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