The leader of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in Lagos State, Chief Olabode George, has warned the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to ensure that the Lagos East senatorial district bye-election is not rigged ‘as usual’ by the All Progressives Congress (APC), as the people would resist any attempt to do so.
He maintained that INEC had a responsibility to conduct a free and fair election, stressing that the electoral umpire should as a matter of urgency review its electoral process, which he said was outdated, and had room for manipulation of election results.
George wondered why the APC continues to indulge in rigging in the state despite being in power in the state for the last 21 years, stressing that this is an indication that the APC has failed in the state.
The PDP chieftain, who made the remark when he hosted candidates of his party for the November bye election in the state yesterday, expressed delight with the successful conduct of the primary election, stating that it was unlike the APC, which party candidate was imposed on the members.
George, who commended the PDP for the peaceful primary election, stressed that the party was democratic by all standards, unlike the other parties, especially the APC, which according to him, adopted a consensus system where candidates were imposed on the party.
He said: “PDP will remain democratic. We are going to stay and work together to ensure that we get victory. The time had come for a democratic party to take over the leadership.
Nigerians should know that APC is not a democratic party but a private company, which can hire and fire at the whims and caprices of the emperor. PDP will remain fair, just and equitable as a party. I appeal to INEC to ensure that the election is free, fair and credible. The voting system is archaic and gives a lot of room for manipulations; therefore, it should be reviewed.”
Also speaking, the party’s candidate for the Lagos East senatorial district, Mr. Babatunde Gbadamosi, said with his election, the state would for the first time have a true representation as he would ensure that some legislatures which affect Lagos State negatively would be reviewed.
He said the Company and Allied Companies Act (CAMA) affects the state disproportionately.
Gbadamosi said Lagos generates 55 percent of the Value Added Tax (VAT) in Nigeria, and while redistributed at the national level, it would only leave the state with less than 20 percent, vowing that there must be economic devolution.
Among other dignitaries, who graced the event held at the Ikoyi office of George, were the former Deputy Governor of Lagos State, Senator Kofoworola Akerele-Bucknor; Dr. Tokunboh Pearse, former Chairman, Dr. Adegbola Dominic, Mr. Segun Adewale among others.