Posted by Pamela Eboh, Awka | 20 January 2019 | 1,034 times
The chairman of Atiku/Obi Campaign Council in Anambra State, Mr Oseloka Obaze, has expressed worry over the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to employ a simultaneous accreditation and voting pattern during the February 16 presidential election.
Obaze, who reflected the position of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on the issue, noted that such a process would ultimately create room for manipulation during the ballot as neither the parties nor observers would be able to monitor the process effectively.
Obaze, who spoke with journalists in Awka on Friday, said it would be rather good for accreditation and voting to be done separately in other to determine the number of accredited voters and compare it against the number of votes cast at a particular location.
He said: “Part of the guidelines issued by INEC on Monday remain contentious, part of it is the issue of simultaneous accreditation and voting.
“It is a challenge because if you continue to accredit and vote, at the end of the day the agents are not sure of how many people were accredited and how many people voted.
“But doing accreditation differently to a certain point will enable us to know the number of people that were accredited and the agents can sign it off and agree on it, this will protect the sanctity of the process.
“Leaving it open ended gives room for manipulation, but we also wish to commend the expunging of the voting points.”
The retired diplomat called on INEC to deploy more energy to the last lap of the ongoing distribution of PVCs to forestall a situation where millions of Nigerians would be disenfranchised.
While also urging INEC to work towards giving Nigerians a credible poll which outcome would be acceptable to all, Obaze added that the eyes of the world were on Nigeria as it goes into the crucial elections.
He further challenged all political parties taking part in the election to shun hate speech and fake news and engage in issue-based campaigns.
Obaze said: “Our candidates are ready and would debate anyone. I task others to have the same disposition so that they could educate Nigerians on their plans and programmes if elected.
“Our candidates, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar and Peter Obi, are people who have been tested in government, they have track records, while Obi’s record as governor of Anambra is there for all to see, the accomplishments of Obasanjo/Atiku presidency are clear.
“We are convinced that Nigeria will be better, Nigerians can go to bed with food in their stomach, the 13,500 million children out of school can get education and 21 million Nigerians that are unemployed can get jobs again.
“Atiku/Obi are proven leaders and they can only add value to the system.
“We express hope that INEC would be fair and just in the conduct of the exercise, they must stick to the rules of the game as outlined in the electoral guidelines.”
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