...SOUTHERN, MIDDLE BELT LEADERS TELL INEC
The Southern and Middle Belt Leaders’ Forum (SMBLF) has expressed concern over the non-transmission of the results of yesterday’s presidential and National Assembly elections to the INEC Portal, after the collation of the results at the various polling units across the country.
A Press Statement jointly signed by Chief E. K. Clark – Leader of SMBLF and PANDEF, Chief Ayo Adebanjo – Afenifere Leader, Dr. Pogu Bitrus – President – Middle Belt Forun and Amb. Okey Emuchay – President General, Ihanaeze Ndigbo Worldwide, said it was disturbed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s promise to Nigerians and the world to hold free, fair and credible elections may have been compromised by INEC.
“SMBLF is disturbed that President Muhammadu Buhari’s promise to Nigerians and the International community of holding free, fair and credible elections may have been undermined by the actions and inactions of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
“Suffice to say that INEC failed to adhere to critical provisions of the amended Electoral Act, with several reports of Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) challenges, the delay in upholding the results and excuses of server hutches. There were also cases of outright voter intimidation in parts of the country, particularly, in Lagos, where people were allegedly prevented from voting, and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been silent on the occurrences.
“Most worrisome are the suggestions that the delay in uploading results to the INEC Portal was deliberate; to provide certain persons opportunities to alter the election results, with Lagos state and Delta state repeatedly cited.
“These situations are unacceptable and should not be allowed. We warn INEC not to tamper with the results; the will of Nigerians as expressed through the votes cast yesterday, across the country, must be upheld. Let the choice of the people stand, in the interest of peace and stability.
“There were high hopes that INEC would do a good job, unfortunately, it appears that the electoral body was not prepared to conduct credible elections.
In conclusion, the statement cautioned the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu not to bring scorn upon himself.
“SMBLF cautions the INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu not to pour scorn on his hard earned reputation, due to pressure from desperate politicians. Nigeria is greater than any individual or group.