Accuses ruling party of burning INEC offices
Adedayo Akinwale and Alex
Enumah in Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has dragged the All Progressives Congress (APC), Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Nigeria Immigration Service and the Minister of Interior, Abdulrahman Danbazau, to court over the participation of two governors from Niger Republic at the recent APC presidential campaign rally held in Kano.
This is coming as the main opposition party has also accused the ruling party of burning the INEC offices in various parts of the country, having realised that President Muhammadu Buhari has no chance to win a free and fair election.
In the suit filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja with suit number FHC/ABJ/CS/165/2019 and dated February 8, 2019 by Adedamola Falokun, the legal officer of plaintiff, PDP indicated that the matter was on election matters.
Two Nigerien governors and some citizens of the country had on January 31, 2019, participated at the President Buhari campaign rally held in Kano.
The plaintiff said that the substantive suit was a pre election matter as it raises issues that ought to be determined before the elections are held.
It said, “The substantive matter in the suit seeks an order of this honourable court, seeking to direct the 1st – 3rd defendant to preclude and ensure that foreigners/aliens do not participate in the general election. The foregoing has created a situation of real urgency.”
The PDP prayed the court to determine whether, having “regard to the provision of Section 12 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended 2015) and Paragraph 2 of the 2019 INEC Regulations and Guidelines for the Conduct of Elections, foreigners and/or aliens can participate either directly or indirectly in the general election in Nigeria”.
The PDP also seek a declaration that, “having regard to the provision of Section 12 of the Electoral Act 2010 (as amended), foreigners and/or aliens can participate either directly or indirectly in the general election of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.”
“That the participation of two Nigerien governors in the 4th defendant’s campaign rally is contrary to Nigerian law and public policy.”
The party also requested for an order, “Directing the 1st, and 3rd defendants to preclude and ensure that foreigners/aliens do not participate in the 2019 general election.
The plaintiff is also seeking an order “restraining the 4th defendant (APC) from inviting or in any way involving foreigners from further participating in its rallies and campaign activities howsoever described”.
The defendants were requested in the originating summons taken out by Kalu Kalu Agu, to “within 30 days after service of this summons on the inclusive of the day of such service, cause an appearance to be entered for them to this summons which is issued upon the application of the plaintiff for the determination of the following questions.”
Meanwhile, PDP has accused the APC of setting fire on INEC offices in various parts of the country, having realised that President Buhari has no chance to win a freehand fair election.
To this end, the main opposition party, in very unequivocal terms insisted that it would never accept any attempt by the APC to postpone the presidential election in any state of the federation.
In a statement issued yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, the main opposition party said that the presidential election must hold in all the states on February 16 and that President Buhari would be served his defeat certificate.
According to him, “The PDP already has the details of how the APC mobilised misguided elements in its fold to burn INEC offices and destroy electoral materials and equipment in Plateau, Abia and Anambra States.”
The party called on Nigerians to resist the desperation of the APC, for which has now resorted to burning INEC offices, while also calling on INEC to note that the APC is after it facilities and as such put stronger measures to protect itself from the assaults of this desperate party.
Ologbindiyan stated, “Our party is also privy to clandestine plots by the APC to burn INEC offices in some other states, so as to paralyse the commission’s operations in such states, and pave the way for the isolation and postponement of Presidential elections in those states; after which it plans to unleash compromised security agencies to muzzle the shifted polls in favour of President Buhari.
“Having realised that President Buhari has no chance in a credible, free and fair general election, the APC now plots a violent staggering of the polls so as to use security forces to re-enact the same rigging formula it used in the 2018 Ekiti and Osun governorship elections.
“In attacking INEC offices and destroying the card readers, APC seeks to cripple the commission’s use of full benefit of technology that will guarantee a credible biometric voter accreditation.”