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APC Govs, Chieftains Plot To Stop Use Of BVAS In Bid To Truncate 2023 Elections – Opposition Parties

Governors of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), led by a southeast counterpart with a controversial past and another from the North-West, alongside the party chieftains, are working to truncate the 2023 general election through evil means, including stopping the use of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System and electronic transmission of results, eighteen registered political parties and civil society organisations, alerted the nation on Wednesday.

The Coalition of United Political Parties alleged this in a press conference in Abuja by its spokesperson and Peoples Democratic Party House of Representatives candidate for Ideato federal constituency, Ikenga Ugochinyere, and CUPP National Secretary and Labour Party candidate for Ankpa/Olamaboro/Omala federal constituency of Kogi State, Peter Ameh.

According to them, plans had been perfected by the plotters to manufacture a crisis of confidence, based on trumped up charges that would lead to the removal of top officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, including its chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, and other National Commissioners who are insisting on the use of the BVAS for the 2023 elections and the “irreversible” use of electronic transmission of the result.

They also claimed in a text read during the press conference to have “intercepted intelligence of an alleged fresh plot against the 2023 elections and this time being coordinated by leading figures of the ruling APC (All Progressives Congress) party, APC Governors led by a South-East APC Governor with controversial past, and another from the North-West who are working with their colleagues to perfect a plot to intimidate INEC leadership into abandoning the use of electronic transmission and uploading of election results to the INEC server, deactivation of the BVAS machine from INEC server and the creation of crisis of confidence based on trumped up charges that will lead to the removal of top officials of the commission including the INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu and other National Commissioners who are insisting on the use of the BIVAS for the 2023 election and the irreversible use of electronic transmission of the result.”

The text read, “We have been tipped off by our intelligence both inside the APC and the camp of the Governors in the conspiracy, and we can state that the opposition is in receipt of information that the INEC leadership, especially senior officials, are being put under immense pressure to abandon the use of the BVAS machine, result transmission and in particular to deactivate the BVAS from the server, an alleged dangerous request which if ever granted under any circumstances can throw Nigeria into pre and post-election crises and will be unacceptable to Nigerian voters, especially the youths who have renewed confidence in the electoral process.

“We are also informed that there is a plot to cause a leadership change in the Commission’s top hierarchy and cause a sweeping change with less than 140 days to the elections. The alleged plan to remove Prof. Mahmood Yakubu and top officials of INEC is a no-go area. The political parties in the country will not accept it. This alleged plot has been coordinated by some APC chieftains and Governors led by a controversial South-East APC Governor. If this plot is not crushed, it can discredit our election and throw Nigeria into crisis. Our institution can’t be destroyed for one man’s quest or a group of people to keep what was hijacked from the people. 

“Nigerian political parties’ chairmen, leaders, chieftains of opposition, CUPP, AA, Labour Party, PDP, APP, ADC etc, will not accept, and we repeat, accept any plan to stop the electronic transmission of results, use of BVAS. We will not accept or agree for any election to be conducted without electronic transmission of results, we will resist any person or plot to deactivate the BVAS from the INEC server, we will resist any hurriedly or arranged plot to force, blackmail, use trump up charges, cooked up security report or any method to force the INEC chairman or any of his Commissioners out of office. Know it today, opposition and political party leaders and Nigerian voters are aware, ready, to defend the electoral process.

“Repeat with this, No BVAS-No election, No Server-No election, No electronic result transmission-No election, any destabilisation or illegal move to force the commission’s top officials, including INEC chair-No election.

“Those who think that they can manipulate institutions of state, both judicial and others, to sneak into power should know that 2023 is the people’s turn, and we will defend it with all our hearts.

“Any attempt to re-enact the (Walter) Onnoghen formula by a few desperate APC leaders and Governors who know that they, as well as their sponsored candidates, are now unelectable, will not work. The plan to destroy the only ray of hope for our election represented by the electronic devices that will also transmit results electronically, especially BVAS will be resisted.

“We categorically state that any plan to destabilise INEC and force the top officials of the Commission including the INEC chairman out of office, whether with trumped-up charges, manipulated security report, instigated or coordinated parliamentary investigation, a hurriedly obtained injunction from the court, a Code of Conduct Bureau inquiry or an arrest and hurried arraignment will not be accepted. We repeat, these will not be accepted by Nigerian political parties, party leaders, civil societies, and the generality of Nigerians.

“Any further actions in this direction will be playing with fire and a direct affront and challenge to Nigerian voters and the entire political parties, and it will be resisted vehemently. Read the mind, eyes, soul, and heart and hear the voice of the opposition. It will not augur well for anyone who continues with this alleged evil plot.”

The group called for the arrest, and trial of those who were involved in the compromise of voters’ registration called Omuma Magic.

They also called on INEC to make its internal report public and redeploy the staff responsible as a way to rebuild confidence.

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