The South-South Civil Society Coalition has vowed to resist further attempt by the President Buhari led administration to use the Military to truncate the rescheduled Bayelsa state governorship election in Southern Ijaw local government and other polling units across the state.
The group have therefore concluded plans, to reach out to the international Civil Society groups and media, to mount pressure on the President Buhari led administration to allow a peaceful, free and fair election during the rescheduled poll in the state.
Addressing the media in Yenegoa, Bayelsa State on Tuesday, December 22, 2015 the group through its spokesman, Barrister John Amaechi confirmed that it was already discussing with some international communities on the illegalities witnessed during the December 5th election particularly on how, the Military was used to intimidate voters and aid activities of militants who were employed to disrupt the electoral process. The group said it wondered why till date, there has not been any categorical statement from the Nigeria Presidency despite the level of violence witnessed which also led to loss of lives.
The group assured that it will mobilize the people to take counter measures, should in case, the Federal government does not desist from invading Bayelsa State with the Military, during the rescheduled election on January 9th, just as they appeal to the international community to call the Nigerian to order.
All the arguments by the Federal government and the APC for the use of military during the election are incorrect. It is merely an attempt to use force to manipulate the outcome of the election and prevent the manifestation of the will of Bayelsa people.
“The consequences that we see in further militarization and manipulation of the electoral process is the chaos that will arise from it, and this is why we believe that foreign bodies should now put pressure on the Nigerian government and President Buhari for him to give the assurance that the elections will go on free and fair as scheduled.” It said
The therefore urge INEC to remain steadfast and resist any interference in the discharge of its mandate and ensure that the will of the people of Bayelsa state prevail irrespective of the pressures from the political actors in the election. The eventual outcome of the Bayelsa governorship election will be a major yardstick to measure the credibility of INEC to conduct future elections in the State and this will also determine the progress or otherwise of our nation, as a truly growing democratic State.