Anambra Electoral Mess: CNPP Calls On INEC Chair Attahiru Jega To Resign Right Away
The Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP), today called on Professor Attahiru Jega, chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to resign immediately, and for last Saturday’s governorship election in Anambra State to be cancelled.
The group said the INEC chairman betrayed the Anambra electorate and Nigerians in general by conducting a sham election, with serious implications for 2015.
“We are making this call on the fact that the eminent Professor Jega from available records bungled the single Anambra State gubernatorial election; and this being the case, what [is] the guarantee that he will not bungle the 2015 general elections?” it asked in a statement signed by CNPP National Publicity Secretary, Osita Okechukwu.
‘We were perplexed that up till this Monday morning when the gross irregularity were clearly made public by the Returning Officer, Professor James Okuoke resulting in the declaration of the result as inconclusive and cancellation of 113,113 votes; Professor Jega behaving like a hired hand on a television interview Sunday afternoon had sort to defend INEC and its failed exercise,” the spokesman said.
Okechukwu noted that the INEC chairman was nervously harping on 65 Polling Units in Obosi Electoral Ward, even when by his own admission the INEC Electoral Officer whom he claimed had been arrested had messed up the electoral process in the entire Idemili North LGA with 306 Polling Units and total registered voters of about 174,000; claiming that he could not cancel the total election because of one Electoral Officer’s malfeasance.
CNPP asked of Professor Jega:
• Are the 113,113 cancelled votes from only Idemili North, where no election took place and where a rescheduled election was supposedly conducted at Obosi and later extended to Abatete and Nkpor Ward 2, without official notification?
• Is it with good conscience that an election was fixed on a Sunday in a predominantly Christian community?
• Can we trust the fate of Nigerians in an incapable, inept and compromise hand to conduct the more sensitive and delicate 2015 general elections?
On its part, CNPP recommended that over 506,000 votes should be cancelled, describing it as “an oversight on the part of Prof. Jega and his cohorts in INEC to cancel only 113,113 votes and close their eyes to the 174,000 votes in Idemili North, where voting did not place and over 200,000 manipulated votes spread across Anambra West and East, Awka North and South, Ihiala and other uncountable Polling Units,” according to the reports of local and international observers.
It said the Anambra State governorship election has exposed Professor Jega’s “palpable ineptitude, gross incapacity, utter negligence and near compromise” in managing elections, and that he must consequently resign forthwith.
It would be recalled that yesterday, less than 24 hours after the election, the All Progressives Congress demanded a total cancellation of the election, citing “massive disenfranchisement” of voters throughout the state occasioned by “the blatant incompetent and/or deliberate sabotage” by INEC.
Also yesterday, the Nigeria Civil Society Election Situation Room, in its final report on the election, described INEC as incompetent, stressing that its handling of the Anambra governorship contest provided worries for the much bigger 2015 elections.