APC Raises Alarm Over Plans To Rig Osun Gubernatorial Election
The All Progressives Congress, APC, has alleged that officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP to plan to rig next Saturday’s gubernatorial election in Osun State.
The plot, the APC alleged, would involve the manipulation of the voters’ register to deny the electorate the opportunity to vote.
However, INEC has swiftly dismissed the allegation as baseless, observing that the voters’ register is already a public document available to all stakeholders in the election and therefore not open to manipulation.
The national publicity secretary of the APC, Lai Mohammed, in a statement on Saturday alleged that “some INEC IT staff has allegedly handed over the entire electoral register for the state to a Special Assistant to a top PDP national official, with a view to manipulating it to disenfranchise many voters.”
”For those who may see this as outlandish, they should recall that an INEC official tampered with the voters register used during the last gubernatorial election in Anambra State to remove the names of many voters,” the party said.
Apart from plans to manipulate the voters’ register, the APC pointed at INEC’s delay in issuing permanent voters’ cards to voters as part of plans to rig the election.
”The truth is that the PDP knows it cannot win a free and fair election in Osun state. Everything so far points to the fact that our party will win by a landslide if the election is free, fair, credible and transparent. In fact, a highly-credible opinion poll carried out by the globally-recognized TNS-RMS shows that the APC leads among voters in the state by 73%, compared to a paltry 19% for the PDP,” Mohammed claimed.
The party advised the people of the state, particularly, its supporters, to be vigilant “in other to thwart the evil machinations of those who are averse to credible and violence-free elections.”
”As we have said repeatedly, we ask for nothing beyond a level playing field for all the candidates in the Aug. 9th election in Osun State. Also, we want all registered voters to be able to exercise their franchise without hindrance,” it stated.
The APC also accused the PDP candidate, Iyiola Omisore, of coming out with a fake opinion poll on the upcoming election which put him ahead of other candidates.
”Apparently stunned by the reality on the ground, as against the propaganda by the PDP, the party’s candidate, Iyiola Omisore, quickly conjured his own opinion poll, purportedly carried out by USAID, showing that he is leading the APC candidate and incumbent Governor Rauf Aregbesola.
It noted that the alleged pollster, the United States Agency for International Development, USAID, denied conduction any opinion poll in Osun State.
”If the voting is done in the best tradition of free, fair and credible elections, whoever wins or loses will have no problem accepting the outcome,” APC said.
Reacting to the allegations, spokesman to INEC, Kayode Idowu in a chat with our correspondent, said that he does not know what to make of the accusations but pointed out that “the register is a public document that has been issued to all political parties and is even on the INEC website.”
He said that there is no way for anybody to tinker with a document that has been widely circulated.
It was impossible to get the PDP to react as calls to the national publicity secretary of the party went unanswered. President Goodluck Jonathan, Vice President Namadi Sambo, PDP National Chairman, Adamu Muazu and other party chieftain were in Osun State Saturday for rally to campaign for Omisore