Atiku spoke through his Media Adviser, Mazi Paul Ibe, in a statement, in Abuja, on Monday evening.…CONTINUE READING
The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the last general elections, Atiku Abubakar, has lambasted the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) over alleged plan to derail Nigeria’s democracy using subterfuge.
He noted that President Bola Tinubu had “already appointed his loyalists as Resident Electoral Commissioners who have now been confirmed by Senator Godswill Akpabio, his lackey” adding that the ruling party sought to “impose a one-party state on Nigerians.”
Atiku spoke through his Media Adviser, Mazi Paul Ibe, in a statement, in Abuja, on Monday evening.
He explained that the ideal notion of democracy does not just reside in a representative government but is essentially rooted in the plurality of ideas.
Atiku said, “Sadly and suddenly, we have seen a trend whereby the range of opposition engagement continues to be narrowed by the ruling party in Nigeria.
“Either through the electoral process where opposition parties are rigged out with brazen impunity, or during the post-election court processes where the judiciary is conspicuously doing the biddings of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), it has become increasingly apparent that the democracy in Nigeria is in a state of ill-health.
“It gets more curious that all the states where the courts have made controversial declarations are states being controlled by the opposition political parties.
“From Nassarawa, Kano, Zamfara and now to Plateau State, where we are witnessing a situation in which what the ruling party missed out on Election Day are being delivered to them through the courts.
“These are clearly ominous signs that threaten not just our faith in the electoral and judicial system but evidence that our democracy is compromised.
“It is also crystal clear that the ruling party will not desist from this inglorious ideology of ‘snatch, grab and run away with power.’
“It is even more worrisome that what is playing out now in the Plateau governorship election petition is a confirmation of the threat echoed by an APC lawmaker in a viral video that the ruling party will compromise the judicial process to ensure its ultimate victory in the courts.
“It, therefore, means that the times we are in are indeed ominous, and the journey ahead in rescuing our democracy from these buccaneering power grabbers is a long one. It also means that every man and woman of good conscience should come together for this common patriotic purpose.
“But we are not surprised by what is going on. In Lagos State where Tinubu holds sway as godfather, opposition became an anathema.
“Everyone including judges was forced to join his party. The few opposition members who managed to get elected were beaten to submission including at the Lagos State House of Assembly where the sole PDP member back in 2018 was suspended and arrested for gun running but mysteriously had the charges dropped immediately after he defected to the APC.
“These are the crude methods that Bola Tinubu has employed in order to reduce the ranks of the opposition and consolidate his hold on power. Is it not mysterious that it was the same panel that sat and heard all the election petition cases from Plateau State before the Court of Appeal?
“ How is it that in election cases where the PDP came first and the APC came second, the court ordered that the APC be declared winner while in elections where the PDP came first and Labour Party came second, the courts ordered a rerun in order to give the APC a chance of victory?
“As Mr. Femi Falana (SAN) put it recently, the judiciary under military dictatorship was much more courageous and had better integrity than what we have today.
“It is obvious that the APC has turned the once respected Nigerian judiciary to a “cash and carry” one where politicians who don’t participate in primaries are named as candidates while actual winners of elections are sacked for flimsy reasons. They simply deliver judgments but not justice.
“Apart from the judiciary, Tinubu has already appointed his loyalists as Resident Electoral Commissioners who have now been confirmed by Sen. Godswill Akpabio, his lackey who is supposed to be heading an independent arm of government. This is how the APC plans to impose a one-party state on Nigerians.”
The former Vice President further said, “Eternal vigilance remains the watch word if Nigeria’s democracy will survive the APC onslaught on our democracy and the institutions that are supposed to check the excesses of the ruling party.”
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