Seriki Adinoyi in Jos
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has warned that the palpable tension currently mounting in Plateau State could give rise to sporadic violence thereby messing up the fragile peace on the state, adding that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and Governor Simon Lalong should be held responsible for any such untoward happening.
Addressing a press conference in Jos, the state capital, the Chairman of the party in the state, Chief Damishi Sango lamented that INEC has refused to announce the results of the three senatorial elections in the state clearly won by the PDP because it is doing everything to give the victory to the candidates of the APC, a development he said may end up in serious violence.
Sango said, “Plateau people clearly spoke their minds by vesting their trust in PDP by overwhelmingly voting for the party. Their votes gave PDP unassailable victory across the state. We salute our supporters for their commitment and resilience in seeking to chart a new course for a united, secure and prosperous Plateau.
“However, we are saddened to note that four days after the conduct of the elections, INEC is yet to turn in the final results and declare the winners. The situation cuts across the three senatorial zones of the state.
the Southern Zone, INEC declared the election inconclusive after cancelling the results of some units in Qua’an Pan and Wase LGAs. There was clear pressure on the Returning Officer to declare the result in favour of APC.
“In the Central Zone, INEC again declared the election inconclusive. As a matter of fact, INEC and stakeholders alongside agents of the parties entered into a formal agreement for a re-run to be conducted in some units in Kanam.
“But very surprisingly, INEC summoned the Returning Officers under heavy military intimidation and ordered them to announce the result of the election in favour of APC.
“In the Northern Zone, we received reports from INEC officers on ground and our agents that PDP had roundly won the election. INEC then picked Tudun Wada-Kabong ward, a stronghold of the PDP in Jos North LGA and has withheld the results of all the 65 units with a total voter population of about 92,000 people! The commission therefore instructed the Returning Officers not to announce the results.
“It is therefore evident that the wholesome cancellation of units across the state was deliberately targeted at disenfranchising the people and weakening PDP bases. It is glaring then to everyone that the Resident Electoral Commissioner ((REC), Alhaji. Husseini Halilu Pai had compromised his position as an umpire.
“Consequently, he has set the whole of Plateau State on tension, which is a recipe for monumental crisis. The PDP and its stakeholders have been working tirelessly to calm frayed nerves. But this cannot go on for too long.
“We are therefore alerting the nation and the world to hold the REC, Alhaji Husseini Halilu Pai responsible for any breakdown of law and order. We can only appeal to him to douse this rising tension by immediately releasing the results.”
Sango also alleged that Lalong is the brain behind INEC infamous outing. “We know from where the pressure is coming: Governor Lalong is the source. The governor has been blackmailed by some elements in the state who want him to give them certain elective positions in exchange for their support for his re-election.
“Lalong wants a second tenure at the expense of the blood and peace of Plateau. Plateau people will accept nothing less than justice. À stitch in time should save nine.”