Ekiti State Governor, Ayodele Fayose has described the postponement of the Edo State governorship election by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), from tomorrow to September 28, as a very bad signal and beginning of the end for democracy in Nigeria.
“It is obvious that the All Progressives Congress (APC) feared that it can’t win the election and is ready to employ whatever crude means to subvert the wish of the people.”
The governor, who said he was alarmed by alleged APC government of President Muhammadu Buhari’s use of security agencies to arm-twist democratic process, also said; “I warned Nigerians not to elect Buhari because he lacked capacity to superintend over any civilised society, now, we are all seeing the results. Our economy is in recession and democracy is also in recession!”
Fayose said, in a statement yesterday, that INEC knew it was not going to conduct the election tomorrow, but opted to deceive Nigerians.
“Apart from the security agencies that they instructed not to provide security for the election, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) was under instruction since Wednesday not to release electoral materials to INEC.
“It was just a game by the APC-led federal government to frustrate the people of Edo State from kick-starting the journey of changing the APC’s one-chance change in Nigeria, but they should realise that the power of the people will always be greater than the power of those in power.
“How can you postpone an election less than 48 hours to the scheduled date? What manner of security concern could prevent an election in just one State when elections were held in Northeast States that are confronted by Boko Haram insurgents?
“Obviously, this is a sign of what to come in 2019 and Nigerians should not be amazed if in 2019, they tell us that elections cannot be conducted.
“This is sad! It is a sad commentary for democracy in Nigeria and I only hope this Buhari’s APC government will not collapse democracy in this country,” the governor said.
… INEC has only postponed doomsday —Orbih, Agbaje
Speaking immediately after INEC announced the postponement to September 28, again, Orbih described the three weeks shift in the conduct of the governorship election in Edo as “postponement of doomsday” for the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and its outgoing governor, Adams Oshiomhole.
Orbih told Daily Sun that the electorate in Edo are determined to use their ballot to unseat the APC.
“For us in the PDP, they have only postponed doomsday for APC and Adams Oshiomhole in Edo. There was no doubt that we were set to win the election. A lot of issues have come up on the part of APC. What they have failed to tell Nigerians is that they have no sellable candidate.
“If you recall, we are in court to challenge the certificate of their candidate, Godwin Obaseki, who lied on oath. They have enough reasons to panic.
“So, we were expecting this kind of reaction. They are now confused.
“What is playing out is like the drama series, Fuji House of Commotion. Any day they decide to conduct the election, we are waiting to defeat the APC,’’ he said.
The PDP candidate in the last governorship election in Lagos State, Jimi Agbaje dismissed the security threat as a “smokescreen” and accused the ruling party of desperation to undermine the electoral process.
“For me, you cannot take away the fact that the PDP worked hard at enthroning democracy. Unfortunately, the ruling party is working hard to undermine it and turn back the hand of the clock. They are citing security reasons but the president was in Edo State for his party campaign. Even elections were held in Borno, Bayelsa and Rivers states.
So, where is the security threat coming from in Edo?
“It is so unfortunate; we cannot continue to run democracy like this.’’
However, an Abuja based lawyer, Emeka Etiaba (SAN) told Daily Sun yesterday that the postponement does not have any legal implication as INEC still has ample time to conduct the election in accordance with the electoral act.
Etiaba also said the postponement equally does not have any political implications. He, however, said; “Nigerian politicians should learn from this development that what goes round, comes round.”
The senior advocate of Nigeria explained that when INEC postponed the last general elect during the tenure of former President Goodluck Jonathan, the APC cried foul and read political meanings into it. Etiaba added that now that the table had turned, it is the PDP complaining.