PDP decries Buhari’s delay in signing Electoral Bill
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) yesterday accused President Muhammadu Buhari of deliberately delaying signing of the Electoral Act Amendment Bill to promote his hidden agenda.
In a statement issued by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party alleged that “Buhari and the All Progressives Congress (APC) are quavering because the draft law effectively checked all machinations which they intend to use in the 2019 general elections.”
He said the amendment bill embattles the President because it eliminates openings for major malpractices, including the use of under-aged and alien voters, vote-buying, alteration of results and manipulation of voter’s register.
The party said such provisions include granting the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) powers to utilise full biometrics accreditation of voters with smart card readers.
In another development, a Lagos High Court in Igbosere yesterday granted leave to five Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) members who were accused of murder to file their bail application.
The accused are Rotimi Kujore, Ismaila Abiola, Kehinde Fasasi, Fatai Adele and Amos Fawole.
The vacation judge, Justice Emmanuel Ogundare, granted the prayers following an ex-parte motion for same by defence counsel and adjourned the hearing to August 23.
Earlier, the defendants’ counsel, Mr. K. O. Osinowo, told the court that the defendants had been in jail for an offence they did not commit.
He said: “They were in a meeting and one of them got shot.”
Osinowo said the ex-parte motion, dated August 7, 2018, has an eight-paragraph affidavit and written addresses in support, adding that the application was for urgent hearing.
He, however, reminded the court that the Chairman of the PDP in Lagos State, Mr. Moshood Salvador, who was also accused of murder, was on Tuesday released by a vacation judge, Justice Obafemi Adamson, following the legal advice from the office of the Directorate of Public Prosecution (DPP).
He said: “I believe that the same thing will also happen when the DPP’s advice is out.”
The defendants, alongside Salvador, Victoria Falowo, Mukaila Odukoya, Oropo Isaac, Mohammed Babangida and Ugochukwu Nwoke, were accused of the murder of Apapa Local Council Chairman, Adeniyi Aborishade.
But the PDP Chairman was on August 14, 2018 exonerated from the murder case after being incarcerated in prison custody by a Yaba Magistrate’s Court.
Aborishade was murdered on July 21 during a PDP visitation meeting held at Igbosuku Village in Eti-Osa Local Council.
It was gathered that a Yaba Magistrate Court, Lagos, had given a remand order against the suspects shortly after they were all arraigned by the police on a two-count charge of conspiracy and unlawful killing.
The Chief Magistrate, Mr. Oyetade Komolafe, issued the remand order and thereafter adjourned the matter till August 27 for DPP’s advice.
Meanwhile, Justice Adamson freed Salvador following the legal advice from the office of the DPP.
In a short ruling, he said: “In view of the advice from the office of the DPP, which exonerated the applicant from a murder charge, Mr. Salvador should be released from prison custody forthwith.”