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Delays in releasing INEC findings on alleged underage voters in 2015 worry PDP, others
A number of international agencies monitoring national elections and the leading opposition party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) have increased pressure on the leadership of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to release its findings on underage voters in various states, particularly in Kano and Katsina states, to the public.
In a statement issued by the spokesman of the party, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, he said the PDP was aware that the investigation may have revealed underage voters, particularly in Kano and Katsina states.
While accusing the Prof Mahmood Yakubu led INEC of trying to cover up the alleged breach, PDP made it clear in its position paper that “Our investigation revealed that beyond underage voters, the INEC panel discovered other atrocities, which the APC and the Presidency agents have been suppressing.
“We are also aware of the manipulations in INEC’s computer data centre, which have been handed over to a compromised official known to be related to President Buhari.
“Nigerians are shocked that the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, is allowing the APC and the Presidency cabal to use him in their desperation to rig the 2019 election for President Buhari despite his overt rejection by the citizens as a result of the failures of his administration.”
According to the PDP, time has come for Nigerians and the international community to note the alleged various attempts by INEC to conceal the underage voters, particularly in Kano and President Buhari’s home state, Katsina.
It would be recalled, according to the PDP, that when the issue first came to the public domain, the APC defended it, while INEC blamed the Kano State Government.
But due to pressure, PDP continued, “The commission had to back down to institute an inquest when confronted with facts showing that it registered minors.
“Furthermore, Prof. Yakubu refused to allow for an all-inclusive panel of political parties and credible NGOs, but went ahead to pick INEC officials with a view to covering the illegality.
“Nigerians may recall that when we challenged the veracity of the preliminary report with documentary evidence, INEC promised to make public its final findings but has refused to do so since the end of the inquest.”
However, PDP advised INEC boos to either do the needful by making public, its findings having exceeded the timeframe it gave itself for the investigations to honourably resist the alleged pressure by the APC and the Presidency or better still, quit the office on time.