INEC and APC's Ugly Script : The Lesson of Kogi West

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The eagerness with which INEC acts the script written by the failed APC Federal Government is disheartening. The present INEC under the leadership of Mahmood Yakubu has proven to be a purpet in the hands of the Presidency.

The failed recall of Senator Dino Melaye further exposed the criminality of INEC. The speed with which they carried out this ugly plot sponsored by the Presidency and the Kogi State Government is a wake up call to all Nigerians.

On the day to authenticate the fake signatures paraded by INEC and APC, constituents came out in their numbers to defend their mandate.

According to reports, the lists displayed by the fraudulent INEC had countless duplicated names and names imported from other constituencies.

Indeed, some persons who didn't sign the petition sponsored by the Presidency and the Kogi State Government came to the polling units to see their names displayed by the crooked INEC.

The people of Kogi West Senatorial District showed the rest of Nigerians the way to confront this fraudulent INEC, backed by a desperate Presidency that has squandered its goodwill.

From all the videos and reports that emanated from Kogi West, it was obvious that INEC in liaison with the Kogi State Government cooked signatures and names to execute the desire of the Presidency.

Voter after voter on tape denied ever signing any signature demanding the recall of Senator Dino Melaye. In a saner clime, we would have demanded an investigation into this national embarrassment. But under this failed APC Federal Government, the crooked is the norm.

The failed APC Federal Government has destroyed the judiciary, the security agencies, the governance structure and INEC. Now, they have commenced the process of silencing the legislature. This recall was simply about gagging a vocal senator.

When I learnt that the recall was to hold on Saturday April 28, it became clear that the arrest of Senator Dino Melaye was orchestrated to keep him away from the recall exercise.

INEC under the leadership of Prof Yakubu has degenerated into a national time bomb. The organisation does not even pretend to be independent. It takes no action to defend sanctity of the ballot.

In Rivers State for instance, INEC connived with the police to steal the mandate of the people of Rivers East Senatorial District. After the rerun election, INEC declared Senator George Sekibo as winner having polled the highest number of votes. However, Police used INEC serial number and concocted results that favoured APC's Senator Andrew Uchendu. That concocted result was tendered at the tribunal and it was admitted and relied upon.

Till date, INEC is yet to investigate how the police used same serial number to declare Uchendu winner in a senatorial election. Under Prof Yakubu, Police is an alternative rigging machine.

While Senator George Sekibo won the popular votes conducted by INEC, the electoral umpire teamed up with the police to impose Mr Andrew Uchendu, who never was roundly defeated. The mystery of this fraud was the fact that Tribunal and Court of Appeal chose to side with the police who forged the result in question.

In November 2016, the Police bursted the Rivers APC Printing Press where fake result sheets are printed. The printers were arrested with INEC Serial numbers used to authenticate the fake result sheets.

The Rivers APC Printing Press, Help-Mate Consult located at 12 Isiokpo Street D-Line Port Harcourt was printing fake result sheets for the rerun elections in the state.

The police thereafter transferred to Calabar and the case was buried till date. INEC made no effort to address the fraud.

Till date INEC is yet to act on its report which indicted criminal police and security operatives who worked with the commission to ensure that the APC won a few seats during the Rivers Rerun, despite the overwhelming voting pattern of Rivers people.

A five-man panel, led by Professor Okechukwu Ibeanu, National Commissioner; declared that many security operatives were partisan and willfully obstructed the process.

The report stated in part: “Most importantly, many of them showed profound political partisanship. Ironically then, security operatives, who were expected to protect the process, turned on it. There were reported cases of willful obstruction of the process by security operatives, including snatching of materials and intimidating voters. In other cases, they refused to accompany and protect men and materials for the elections.

“But the most mind-boggling were cases of hostage taking, hijack of materials and physical attacks on INEC officials perpetrated by secruity operatives. Of singular note was a certain policeman named Akin Fakorede, who ostensibly is a commander of the special anti-robbery squad (SARS) in Rivers State. Mr. Fakorede first tried to lure INEC staff to travel with him from Porth Harcourt to Emohua LGA under the pretext of enabling them to collate results. But for the intervention of National Commissioners, we suspect that he would have put our staff in harms way."

What the constituents of Kogi West Senatorial District have done is to serve a notice to INEC, APC, Presidency, Kogi State Government and security agencies that nobody will tolerate financial inducements, intimidation and forgery in the face of the massive failure of President Muhammadu Buhari.

With well over N50trillion in oil proceeds, loans, taxes and looted fund recovery since 2015, Buhari has been unable to initiate and complete a single project across Nigeria. Any project making headway was initiated and paid for by Former President Goodluck Jonathan. Nigerians are witnessing the worst form of corruption, financial bleeding, insecurity and unpatriotic governance since Independence.

The truth is that Buhari and APC emerged on the altar of deception and forgery. Like Former President Goodluck Jonathan said, propaganda can only win election, but it cannot govern.

Sad as it may sound, we no longer have a Presidency in the real sense of the word.

Former Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr David Babachir Lawal in view of the failures of the Buhari administration raised the query: "who's the Presidency?" Since then, we have been looking for the absentee Presidency.

A Presidency that is proficient in issuing press statements instead of protecting lives and property. A Presidency that is comfortable finger pointing while no project is executed anywhere in the country. A Presidency that thrives in persecuting opponents rather than seek justice. A Presidency that destroys the foundations of the three arms of government, hijacks the electoral umpire and manipulates the security agencies. Who's the Presidency? There can be no Presidency without the rule of law. This APC Federal Government hates the rule of law, hence it has nothing to offer.

Ahead of the 2019, all eligible voters armed with their permanent voters cards must be vigilant and courageous. We must work to save this country, irrespective of the financial resources and security forces that will be thrown up by the APC Federal Government. As a collective, we have the responsibility to end this darkest night of our existence. No sacrifice is too great to end this political scourge.