LG Poll: Use  BVAS or Count Us Out,  Says Oyo APC

Kemi Olaitan in Ibadan

The Oyo State chapter of the All Progressives Congress (APC) yesterday threatened to withdraw all its candidates from the forthcoming local government council election if the state Independent Electoral Commission (OYSIEC) fails to guarantee the usage of Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) for the poll.

The party in a statement issued by its Publicity Secretary, Olawale Sadare, expressed concerns over what it described as the game of deceit being played by OYSIEC over the need to deploy BVAS machines for the election fixed for April, stating that it must  show the whole world that it was not out to do the bidding of the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) as it happened the last time when candidates of other parties were denied their earned victory particularly in Ido and Ibarapa East Local Government Councils.

He said the party has watched with dismay the lip service being paid by OYSIEC to the issue of BVAS required for the smooth conduct of the poll. 

Noting that the commission is apparently under pressure to jettison the usage of BVAS because the ruling PDP is averse to it as it is prepared to compromise the April poll in its bid to ensure all the candidates of the PDP win at all cost.

According to him, “It is the height of insincerity on the part of OYSIEC to hide the status of any request made to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on the release of the machines for the planned poll even as we have been reliably informed that INEC does not have any reason to turn down such request if properly and genuinely made.

“Apart from the fact that the devices are owned by Nigerians, INEC is committed to the conduct of credible elections and the commission is ever ready to assist the cause within and outside Nigeria.

“Oyo APC took a bold decision to field candidates in this election basically for two reasons: to deepen our democracy at the grassroots level and also to rescue the third tier of government which has been rendered useless by the current PDP administration. Consequently, that PDP is paranoid today is understandable, and we use this medium to restate our commitment the cause of constitutional democracy and good governance. However, we are concerned about the palpable desperation in the camp of the ruling party in their bid to sustain the status quo which does not augur well for the masses.

“As a matter of fact, we have observed that the Chairman of OYSIEC might not be able to be fair to all parties as he is wont to do for obvious reasons. The fact that the PDP elements are averse to BVAS is responsible for the failure of OYSIEC to announce to the world that the machines would be used for the election. At this juncture, we are stating it categorically that Oyo State APC would not be a party to any sham or charade, and should the election body fail to guarantee the usage of BVAS for the April poll, they should count us out.”

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