Group seeks poll cancellation as Bello begins second term
Kogi United for Democracy (KUD) has called for outright cancellation of the recent Kogi State governorship election that gave Governor Yahaya Bello a second term, which begins today.
Addressing journalists yesterday in Maitama, Abuja, chairman of the group, Yakubu Ugwolawo, called for holistic reform and overhaul of the electoral system to legalise electronic voting, especially use of the card-reader, to checkmate rigging and violence during elections.
“We are calling for the outright cancellation of the election, as it did not reflect the wishes of the people of Kogi.
“In view of the dastardly act demonstrated to scuttle people’s opinion in the previous elections, it has become imperative for a holistic electoral reform in Nigeria,” he said.
The group reminded dignitaries that will grace the swearing-in that the state was still in deep mourning over citizens that died in the November 16, 2019 election.
Advocating the empowerment of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to prosecute electoral offenders, KUD urged the Federal Government to institute a high-powered judicial panel to investigate the violence that took place before, during and after the election.
It is expedient judging from the outright condemnation of the election by the international community, civil society organisations and other respected institutions and individuals across the world.
Ugwolawo said since the creation of the state, it had never witnessed the kind of violence that erupted in the last election.
He added, “The election consumed many innocent souls and others maimed, including the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) zonal women leader, Salome Abuh, who was burnt alive in her house at Ochadamu in Ofu Council of Kogi East Senatorial District by thugs.
“Lives were terminated to satisfy the ambitions of some individuals in their desperation to perpetuate themselves in a position they could not manage in the first place.”
He urged the visitors to take pains to look round Lokoja and environs to see whether anything happened to the pothole-riddled roads and physical facilities needed in a state capital.
But when reminded that the call for cancellation was not tenable, since even the Supreme Court had looked at the case, he said they were relying on the court of public opinion to achieve their aim.
A member of the group, Goodman Akwu, advocated review of the Electoral Act by the National Assembly every four years, as politicians were fond of inventing new modes of rigging.
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