Emmanuel Addeh in Yenagoa
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Campaign Organisation in Bayelsa State has called on the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, to withdraw the list of presiding officers for the November 16 governorship poll in the state.
The party said it was shocked by the discovery that the commission in the state had published a list of Supervisory Presiding Officers (SPOs), which was allegedly handed to it by the opposition in a desperate bid to rig the governorship election slated for November 16.
The Director of Media and Publicity of the Senator Douye Diri Campaign Organisation, Jonathan Obuebite, who fingered a Deputy Vice Chancellor of a federal institution of being the arrowhead of the plot, called on the INEC national chairman to prevail on the REC to withdraw the list without delay in the interest of peace.
The party urged the electoral body to engage the services of neutral and credible SPOs from institutions outside the state.
Obuebite said that the electoral body has a responsibility to assure the Bayelsa people by its actions that it was prepared to conduct free, fair and credible election.
“Bayelsans and Nigerians have seen that with what has just happened; the APC is not ready for a free, fair and credible election, but I am not surprised because they have a penchant for illicit behaviours during electioneering period.
“All they have always been known for is to truncate, undermine and subvert the will of the people.
“I, therefore, call on the INEC chairman to caution the Bayelsa State REC as it is glaring that his relationship with the APC to work against the PDP will further tarnish the reputation of INEC.
“I also call on the international community and all security agencies to be aware of what the REC in Bayelsa State is doing to jeopardise the forthcoming governorship elections in the state.
The PDP campaign team urged INEC to deploy RECs and commissioners of proven integrity with a reputation for impartiality and competence for the election rather than those he said are doing the dirty jobs of smearing the image of the commission.
He said that INEC should be guided strongly by a consciousness of its reputation to halt the ‘evil plot’ to send compromised officials to taint the electoral process in Bayelsa.