“No Alternative” raps INEC for cancelling election

February 16, 2019
168 Views

A campaign group working for the re-election of President Muhammadu Buhari has condemned the action of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) which led to the postponement of the Feb. 16 elections.

A statement issued on Saturday by the National Coordinator of “No Alternative to Buhari-Osinbajo (NATBO 2019)”,Vincent Uba, said the action was capable of discouraging prospective voters.

Uba stated that INEC has given Nigerians opportunity to interpret the reasons for the postponement in different ways, and then put the blame on the current administration.

“As cogent as INEC reasons for the postponement may be, we had expected the electoral body to be on top of its game, foreseeing the likely issues that could rear their ugly heads leading to this avoidable embarrassing situation we have found ourselves.

“In an electoral contest that has been laden with unnecessary desperation by the opposition to unseat the current administration by every means available, it is expected that INEC should have envisaged possible sabotage to compromise the process leading to the free, fair and credible re-election of the party in power.

“Notwithstanding the fact that some people had called for the postponement of the election including the opposition party, PDP, this postponement came at a time most unexpected – the eve of the election.

“It is very appalling and unfortunate that some people are now blaming the government for this postponement as if INEC is no longer independent, but there have been earlier convincing factors that would have been cogent reasons for the postponement,” the statement quoted Uba as saying.

The coordinator of the NATBO 2019 expressed disappointment that INEC, even in the face of its budget delay by the National Assembly, assured Nigerians that it was still feasible to hold the elections according to the already released time table.

The statement also quoted Uba as saying: “We believe that it was at that point of the budget delay that INEC would have been bold and courageous enough to postpone the election.

“Another factor that would have lent credence to the postponement is the burning and other sabotage activities of INEC offices and facilities in some states.

“When these INEC office burnings were reported, it became obvious that some unscrupulous persons were on sabotage mission and that the election dates could not be feasible but INEC went ahead to maintain that it was going ahead with election on the original dates.

“That would have been a good reason to postpone.

“Despite the postponement, we still have confidence on INEC to remain neutral and resolute in its desire and commitment to conduct free and fair elections that would further portray the positive image of Nigeria as the Buhari-led administration work to ensure a better future for the citizenry.”

Uba urged the electorate to remain focused in the face of the disappointing circumstance and come out to cast their votes on Feb. 23.

The group while appealing for their understandings of the foreign observers following the postponement, apologised for the inconveniences the postponement may have caused them.

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