The Coalition of Democratic Watchdogs of Nigeria has expressed worry over the bias expressed by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in hastily announcing the cancellation of the Zamfara State All Progressives Congress (APC) primaries.
The coalition in a press release made available to journalists in Abuja said it watches with keen interest the unfolding events as it affects the Commission’s supposedly neutrality befitting of the electoral management body and its Chairman, Professor Mamood Yakubu.
The release signed by Comrade Yunusa Idris said the election primaries held in Zamfara state as attested by the INEC Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in the state, 2 AIGs, Zamfara Commissioner of police, DSS, etc was given to an undue nullified.
The rest of the release reads:
Because the primary election did not favour an anointed candidate from the Presidency, INEC was rather too quick to announce that Zamfara state APC cannot field candidates even while the concluding primaries was ongoing.
Pursuant to the provisions of section 31 and 87 respectively of the Electoral Act 2010 (as Amended), INEC ought to have exhausted the duration for primaries before placing a restraint on the APC.
Again, the contending individuals has gone to court on this matter. It is only compliant to the rule of law that governs modern democracy that INEC waits for the judgment on this matter before fielding any candidate.
As Nigerian Citizens, we may wish to ask the following questions:
Why was INEC so much in a hurry to issue a statement against an ongoing primary election? Could it be that the outcome of the primary did not favour the Minister of Defence who wants to be a Governor at all cost?
Why is INEC under pressure from the Presidency to adopt Mr. Mansur Muhammad Dan-Ali, the Minister of Defence as the APC Governorship candidate of Zamfara State even while the court is yet to pronounce judgment?
This matter stands as a litmus test for the Professor Mamood Yakubu led INEC as Nigerians are observing with the International community showing keen interest on the mockery being perpetrated on the most populous black democratic nation of the world.
By this medium, we wish to sound a note of warning on INEC which is funded by tax payers money that our coalition would not fail to mobilize 10 million Nigerians against this submergence and treat to our democracy if Professor Yakubu and his team attempts to truncate the rule of law and the neutrality of INEC by aligning with any directive/s that undermines the Independence and neutrality of INEC.