… Falana says citizens are gagged and can’t engage in revolution
… Voters go for the highest offer
Despite the deployment of over 35,000 security personnel to Kogi and Bayelsa States for the Saturday’s off season guber polls, the constant threat to life in the two states disenfrenchised a good number of electorate,says the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD).
Executive Director of the CDD Idayat Hassan disclosed this to Journalists in Abuja on Monday at its’ post election briefing. Idayat said the “elections were violently and cruelly undermined by an unrelenting band of partisan outlaws”. “The sheer magnitude of the violent assault on the sanctity of the ballot was shocking beyound description…the out come of the process that was so criminally subverted should not be allowed to stand…” Idayat added. She also raised concern of vote buying where she stated that the CDD observers team reported that voters had options of choosing which political parties pay more for vote buying.
She said the CDD observers team in Kogi recorded the death of 10 persons as a result of the violence in the polls. The two main parties the Ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) and the main Opposition Peoples Democratic Party according to the CDD were responsible for the violence in their respective strongholds.
Videos of politicians accompanying the thugs to perpetrate violence are been scrutinised by the CDD for authenticity the CDD said.
DEMOCRACY UNDER THREAT
Also, Professor Aminu Ibrahim a member and former Executive Director of the CDD raised concern over what he termed the deterioration of the intergrity of Nigeria’s electoral process. “Very clearly security agencies with the constitutional responsibilities for the rule of law, and defence of citizens and their rights, were very clearly complicit in organising disruption of the elections”
Professor Aminu said the security agencies engaged in allowing attacks in polling units in Kogi which involves carting away of election materials and producing an outcome which is not in conformity with the wishes of voters who would have wanted to choose the candidate of their choice. “The massive deployment of Security personnel for the elections was not visible, we did not see any police checkpoint on our way to Lokoja except the police went to Lokoja through something else you know we are in Africa” Professor Aminu humorously added
He said Nigeria’s democracy is under threat and deteriorating. He called on the President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene in the electoral process to avoid throwing the country into a state of anarchy.
Human right lawyer Femi Falana present at the briefing called on the CDD to help citizens fight for their votes. “The way we are going, if you mention revolution, you know where you will end, (everyone laughs) how will CDD help win the confidence of Citizens in the electoral processes” Falana Asked? The legal luminary called for the prosecution of those sabotaging the efforts of the nation’s Election umpire.