Nigeria’s ruling party, the All Progressives Congress, APC, and the main opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Saturday, August 20, 2016, disagreed on a statement credited to the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, that it could not guarantee conclusive elections in 2019.
The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, had lamented that given the challenges and malpractices that had marred past and recent elections, the commission would not be able to guarantee conclusive polls in 2019.
Speaking in an interview with the Punch, the Rivers State publicity secretary of the PDP, Mr. Samuel Nwanosike, said INEC was in the habit of appointing card-carrying members of political parties as ad hoc staff.
Nwanosike pointed out that such a situation would breed election malpractices lead to the postponement of elections by the commission.
But his counterpart in the APC, Mr. Chris Finebone, faulted Nwanosike’s claim, saying that the commission would not deliberately declare elections inconclusive.
Finebone added that that unfolding events during the election could force the commission to cancel or declare a poll inconclusive.
Meanwhile, the candidate of the APC for Rivers South-East in the legislative re-run, Senator Magnus Abe, has said INEC did not do his party any favour by releasing the Tai LGA election results, but only did what was necessary.
Abe explained that INEC addressed the injustice meted to the APC by the cancellation, adding that the election in the area was conducted, collated and returned by the returning officers, thereby making the results valid.