~ Accuse INEC, security agencies, NBC of bias
Four political parties in Adamawa State, the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Young Progressives Party (YPP), Action Alliance (AA) and the Peoples Redemption Party (PRP) have accused federal government agencies in the state of compromising the electoral process to ensure the emergence of Sen. Aishatu Dahiru Binani as the next governor by hook or crook.
Spokesman of the four political parties and Gubernatorial candidate of the SDP, Dr. Umar Ardo, at a press conference in Yola said, with such interference, the four parties have lost confidence in the entire electoral process.
” We address you this afternoon to speak about some serious issues regarding the forthcoming election on Saturday. Most of you are aware with the broadcast of president Muhammadu Buhari with regards to the candidacy of the APC guvernorship candidate Sen Aishatu Dahiru Binani.
“The president called on Adamawa people to elect her and emphasized that he as the president, the party and federal government are by her. We would have no problem with such broadcast because the president is at liberty to support the candidate of his party but the fallout of the broadcast is adversely affecting the credibility and the integrity of the election,” he said.
Ardo noted that the open support being enjoyed by the only female candidate has turned her to the lord of the manor and gave her the leverage to dictate and give directives to federal government agencies responsible for the success of the polls.
“The open support of the president has turned the candidate of APC in Adamawa State as far as this election is concerned into the lord of the manor. She seem to be the only candidate that all the federal agencies are leaning towards. We have seen the security agencies are at her beck and call, NBC and INEC officials are also at her beck and call.
“We have it for a fact that her meetings with these agencies virtually directing how they should conduct their affairs. We have on record four different meetings she held especially with INEC officials. Arising from these meetings from the sketchy reports we have, she seems to be directing the postings of election officers, presiding officers and others who are directly in control of the BVAS.
“If the candidate of a political party will be given such access to the officials that conduct the election, then there is huge problem. And also more devastating is that INEC itself, six months after Sen Binani emerged as the candidate of APC, she was awarded a contract for the production of governorship results sheet. The contract is to the tune of N432m.
“Even though Adamawa is not included in the list of the states, the fact that she is producing results sheet gives her inside and access into the workings of INEC and into the production and distribution of INEC sensitive materials.
“This is a huge advantage given to her by INEC itself. The money given to her will give her a huge financial advantage over other candidates and she was given the contract six months after emerging candidate of the APC .
“We should forget talking about free and fair election in Adamawa as the election has already been compromised by INEC long before the election is conducted. The fact that the president made the broadcast has tilted all agencies towards her.
“As we speak, a lot of us are been denied broadcast by many radio and TV stations in Adamawa State. I had meetings with each of the GMs of the four radio stations here they all told me NBC bar them from airing our programs,” he said.
Ardo also accused Binani of openly vowing to steal the election since she has the backing of the law courts. He also accused her of bragging that she single handedly brought the new REC of Adamawa to do her bidding during the election.
“She is going around saying that she brought the REC through the minister of education. And she is bragging saying that even by stealing she will win the election we have the video clips. She stated that what she wants is for INEC to declare her the winner and she will handle the rest. APC guvernorship candidate is being backed by the president security, INEC and NBC,”
He noted that because of her desperation to get power at all cost, Binani has circumvented the electoral act by incurring expenditure higher than the spending ceiling contained in the act.
“In one fell swoop, she distributed 90 vehicles worth over a billion naira. Which contravenes electoral act which put the limit of expenditure for governorship to a billion naira. We need to put a stop to this kind of politics or Adamawa State will find itself in a logjam.
“INEC has credibility issues arising from the presidential election. We hope it will use the opportunity of this guvernorship and state assembly election to rectify her poor image. But we are going from frying pan to fire,” he said.
Ardo noted that despite her resort to self help and desperation, Binani will still lose the election as the Muslim community has rejected her.
“However despite that she will not win. The Muslim community will not vote her that is why she is in a frenzy to buy the position which informed her distribution of 90 vehicles including brand new vehicles,” he said.