The main opposition party in Nigeria, the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, on Monday, November 28, 2016 called for the cancellation of the result of the November 26 Ondo governorship election.
In an e-mailed statement to The Trent signed by its spokesperson, Deji Adeyeye, the PDP said the election was blatantly manipulated from the beginning to the end to favour the All Progressives Congress, APC, the ruling party whose candidate, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu won the poll.
The PDP slammed the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, and accused the electoral body of overseeing a ‘charade’ and said that the result of the poll was not the true reflection of the will of the people of Ondo State.
The party, whose candidate, Eyitayo Jegede, came second in the election also claimed that the actions of INEC in collaboration with the APC-led government left the PDP no time to campaign and sell its candidate and party manifesto to the electorates in Ondo State.
“The outcome of the November 26, 2016 Gubernatorial Election in Ondo State as declared by Professor Abdul Ganiyu Ambali, the Chief Returning Officer of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is a charade and not the true reflection of the will of the people of Ondo State,” the statement said.
“INEC has however graduated from inconclusive Elections as seen in Kogi, Bayelsa, Osun, FCT, Imo, Nassarawa and some other previous by-elections in the country to ‘Advanced Election Rigging’, as in the case of Edo and Ondo States Gubernatorial Elections.
“It is common knowledge that the APC Agents openly bought votes of the electorates in the full glare of security operatives who did nothing to prevent such dastardly violation of the Electoral Law. It is not surprising that the electorates in Ondo state became so vulnerable to the corruptive influence of the APC because of the hash economic situation in the Country inflicted on Nigerians by the APC administration which have indeed made all Nigerians virtually beggars in their own country.
“Nigerians will recall that we had persistently called for the postponement of the election before Saturday, for at least two weeks to enable our party campaign and prepare properly for this election as a result of the setback orchestrated by Justice Okon Abang and the charlatans in PDP who allowed themselves to be used by the APC to destroy our chances in the Ondo State Election.
“The actions of INEC in collaboration with the APC-led administration left us no time to campaign and sell our candidate and party manifesto to the electorates in Ondo State. Our persistent call for the postponement of the Election which was backed and supported by more than 20 other political parties were all rejected by INEC which were acting the script of the APC. It was a carefully planned and well orchestrated strategy to rig the Election well in advance by preventing the PDP from planning and campaigning for the Election. The APC has hereby introduced a new formula of rigging Election in Nigeria.
“In view of the fact that the election was blatantly manipulated from the beginning to the end to favour the APC, we vehemently reject the results of the November 26, 2016 Gubernatorial Election in Ondo State.
“The election and all actions leading to it fall short of laid down principles guiding conduct of elections in Nigeria. We have instructed our candidate and the Ondo State chapter of our party to proceed to the tribunal to challenge the outcome of the election.
“We call on the judiciary to redeem Nigeria’s image on this matter as we request for the total cancellation of the election in Ondo State.
“Finally, we congratulate our candidate, Hon. Eyitayo Jegede, SAN, and our party in the state for the gallant performance at the poll, despite the severe injuries inflicted on us before, during and after the election.
We call on all our members and teeming supporters nationwide and Ondo State in particular to remain calm and continue to work with the leadership of the party to move the PDP forward.”