Barely few days to Nigeria’s tension-soaked presidential election, a Civil Society group known as the Coalition for Electoral Integrity says it has uncovered an alleged ploy by the ruling All Progressives Congress to rig the election in some southern states of the country, in favour of President Muhammadu Buhari “at all costs”, using sponsored violence and the security agencies.
The group said the APC has designed “increasingly-desperate” strategies to rig the election, particularly in some southern States, which includes Akwa Ibom, Delta, Rivers and Abia States.
In a statement issued in Abuja and signed by Ayo Ologunloluwa on behalf of the coalition, the Civil Society group said APC had concluded plans to deploy uniformed bandits to disrupt the transportation of electoral materials to polling stations and forcibly disperse voters, after accreditation exercise, during the forthcoming elections.
“While that is going on, the plan is to use armed security agents, mostly soldiers ostensibly to chase away the bandits and evacuate INEC officials and voting materials, and after evacuating them to ‘safety’, they will then coerce the electoral officials to allow them, security agents that is, to cast all the ballots in the particular unit." he said
The alleged APC rigging strategy in the PDP-controlled states, Comrade Ologunloluwa said, “involves the use of carrot and stick against PDP agents. The carrot involves seeking to buy the agents over with mouth-watering sums of money. If this fails, security agents and APC thugs will simply disrupt the voting and destroy election materials.”
“Already, we can confirm on good authority, that the Federal government has ordered that extra number of these Special security squads, be deployed mostly to Rivers, Akwa Ibom and Delta States, with strict instructions to capture these states for the APC" he added.
He also said plans were afoot by the APC to instigate violence in major towns in Delta, Rivers and Akwa Ibom, over the next few days, with a view to scaring away voters.
The group said it is therefore using this medium to alert the general public and the international community to these evil machinations and desperate plans of the APC led Federal government.
Stating further, the group said Commissioners of Police in the aforementioned States have been charged with tasks to “scuttle the elections in the states by acts of intimidation, unlawful arrests, and turning a blind eye to all irregularities and illegality that the APC may perpetrate during Saturday’s elections.
The civil society said it is worried, that all these are happening in spite of all assurances by President Muhammadu Buhari, for a peacful and credible 2019 general elections.