‘Uzodimma’s emergence in Imo, IPOB agitation responsible for attacks on INEC’
Violence an attempt to weaken region ahead of 2023, says IPAC
Former National Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Lai Olurode, has said the court ruling that produced Governor Hope Uzodinma and agitation by the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) were likely reasons for the recent attacks on the commission’s offices.
Olurode said the perception that elections do not always reflect the will of the people in the country was another factor that should not be ignored.
He pointed out that argument in some quarters that INEC’s facilities across the country were not well fortified did not hold water, as hoodlums had also attacked other critical assets including police stations.
His words: “Most of the attacks in Imo State was caused by the ill-fated election. It was more of judicial victory, because the election in which someone, who lacked the formidable electoral strength became governor.
“Another reason is the activities of IPOB members, who are against the conduct of elections in the region. But I also think that the argument would only carry weight if there have not been attacks prior to the victory of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the court.
“Elections in Nigeria under Prof. Attahiru Jega and its present Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu might not completely approximate their wishes, but to say that the elections did not totally reflect the wishes of the people and their political links, maybe misgivings”.
On the implications for the 2023 general election, he said setting ablaze INEC facilities would not change the country’s political mood, especially for the agitators, adding that it would not also stop the elections from holding.
On his part, National Chairman, Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC), Leonard Nzenwa, said the onslaught on INEC facilities in the South East was an attempt to weaken the region ahead of the 2023 election.
Nzenwa, who disclosed that IPAC had alerted the nation in March this year on plots to attack the electoral institutions, lamented that the security agencies did not act on the intelligence they received.
“The burning of INEC facilities is barbaric and anti-people. It is a direct assault on people with intent to scare them from discharging their civic obligations, particularly for upcoming Anambra election,” he stressed.
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