APC reacts to Obasanjo’s call for election cancellation, says it is a coup
The All Progressives Congress Presidential Campaign Council (APC PCC) has condemned the call by former president, Olusegun Obasanjo for the cancellation of the Saturday’s elections in areas where the exercise was disrupted.
The APC PCC described Obasabjo’s position as a coup against democracy.
Obasanjo, who had declared his support for the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Peter Obi, in a letter to President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday, alleged that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had compromised the conduct of the elections.
But responding to Obasabjo’s allegations, the Special Adviser, Media, Communications and Public Affairs, APC PCC, Dele Alake, said Obasanjo could not substantiate his claims, adding that his comments were moves to derail the nation’s democratic process.
The statement reads, “Our attention has been drawn to a press statement by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in which he was virtually calling for a truncation of the ongoing electoral process and a cancellation of already conducted elections on the basis of frivolous, unfounded and baseless allegations by politicians who are sore losers and have no respect for democratic values.
“Obasanjo repeated without the slightest iota of evidence rumours he had picked up that the Bimodal Voters Accreditation System had been compromised and that the results of elections being announced are fraudulent. It is tragic that a former President who ought to be a statesman in comportment and speech will recklessly seek to endanger and derail our democratic process for utterly selfish, egoistic and malicious reasons. He offers not a single credible piece of evidence to prove his laughable and ridiculous allegations against INEC and the credibility of the ongoing process.”
Tinubu’s campaign team further stated that it was aware that Obasanjo was not an impartial and disinterested party in this election, making reference to the former president’s January 1 statement where “he had issued a characteristically lengthy epistle to Nigerians endorsing the candidacy of Mr Peter Obi and asking Nigerian youths to vote en masse for him.”
The statement added, “Of course our reaction was that the former President was entitled to his view and that the outcome of the elections would demonstrate if he had any electoral value. As fate would have it, Peter Obi was defeated even in Obasanjo’s own polling unit in Abeokuta in Ogun State. But it is now obvious that the only election Obasanjo will agree to being free, fair and credible is one that produces Obi as winner which is ridiculous.
“Is Obasanjo also querying the outcome of the presidential elections in Lagos or Delta where Obi won? If the outcome in Lagos won by Obi is free and credible, on what basis is he querying the outcome of the elections in other places? This is pure mischief and sheer hypocrisy. Obasanjo wants President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in an undemocratic manner to truncate the ongoing political process just the way he did most shamelessness in the 2003 and 2007 elections widely described as the worst in our political history.”
The APC PCC said no true democrat must seek an abortion of the process just because he believed the elections were not going his way, noting that what “Obasanjo is subtly calling for in his nefarious statement is a coup against democracy and the constitution.”
The team, while urging that Obasanjo’s remarks should be condemned and ignored, said the constitution had stipulated processes for seeking redress against electoral malpractices in the past and had been tested several times and used to redress electoral injustice where such had been proven.
“Nigerians must reject Obasanjo’s dubious and hypocritical advice and stay strictly and firmly on the path of constitutionalism and democratic due process,” the statement added.
The former president had said Saturday’s presidential election failed integrity test and as such, the election must be cancelled.
He particularly asked the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof Mahmood Yakubu, to save Nigeria from the looming danger and disaster waiting to happen.
The former president noted that none of the presidential candidates is a saint, but when compared on the basis of knowledge, discipline and what they can offer, Obi has an edge.
In a statement on Monday titled “2023 Nigeria Presidential Election: An Appeal For Caution and Rectification, Obasanjo demanded cancellation of elections in areas where the exercise was disrupted.
According to him, it is no secret that INEC officials at operational level have been allegedly compromised following the manual transmission of results which he alleged had been manipulated and doctored.
He told President Muhammadu Buhari that “tension is building up and please let all elections that do not pass the credibility and transparency test be cancelled and be brought back to areas where elections were disrupted for next Saturday, March 4, 2023, and BVAS and Server officials be changed.”
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