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Purported disqualification: We won’t replace any candidate – PPA, APGA

Posted by By JACOB EDI, Abuja on 2007/02/20 | Views: 450 |

Purported disqualification: We won’t replace any candidate – PPA, APGA


The Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) on Monday pointedly told the Federal Government and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that they would not replace candidates purportedly disqualified from contesting the forthcoming elections.

The Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA) and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) on Monday pointedly told the Federal Government and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) that they would not replace candidates purportedly disqualified from contesting the forthcoming elections.

This is coming at a time some top politicians led by former governor of Kano State, Alhaji Abubakar Rimi, invaded INEC’s office to demand reversal of certain decisions of the electoral body.

At a meeting of a coalition of seven political parties in Abuja, PPA spokesman, Olu Akerele, said the party had no intention of substituting the name of the party’s presidential candidate, Orji Uzor Kalu.

"There is no going back. Our candidate is still in the race," Akerele said at the Abuja parley.
APGA also accused INEC of banning all its candidates in the coming polls, insisting that the electoral body had "no right to disqualify, verify or screen any candidate for the April elections."
The seven parties at the meeting included the PPA, APGA, Action Congress (AC), Democratic Front for a Peoples Federation, African Democratic Alliance, Democratic Peoples Alliance and Ethnic Nationalities Movement.

The coalition, under the auspices of National Coalition Working for Free, Fair and Credible Election, took a swipe at President Olusegun Obasanjo over his statement that the coming elections would be a do or die affair, saying that such statements was an incitement to violence contrary to provisions of Section 138 (a) of the Electoral Act 2006.

"Those threats portend grave danger to national security, yet they came from the lips of Mr President. To all intents and purposes, do or die is a clear invitation to anarchy and violence," they said.
Not handing over to a candidate duly elected by the people of Nigerians as Obasanjo has vowed, the coalition said in a press statement read by former Information Minister and APGA chieftain, Chief John Nwodo, was an invitation for trouble.

The parties, in a letter addressed to INEC chairman called on the electoral body to use the open secret allot system for the April polls, noting that the June 12, 1993 elections that made use of the model had been adjudged the freest and fairest in the nation’s history.
They also demanded that policemen, soldiers and men of the State Security Service (SSS) be barred from election venues.

"Should there be rigging at any ward, signatories to the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) must organize spontaneous demonstration against those who rigged the election. Legal action to follow with evidence procured by signatories to this MoU, which could possibly include photographs of events at such polling stations," said the coalition in the MoU made available to Daily Sun at a news conference in Abuja.

The coalition also chided the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for allowing itself to be used for political purposes.
"Though it is a welcome instrument in Nigeria’s fight against corruption, it has become a willing tool in Mr. President’s fight against his critics and political enemies," the parties stated, adding that the pact between the chairmen of EFCC and INEC was simply a recipe for disaster.

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