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Atiku Demands Tribunal to declare him winner or nullify Feb 23 Poll

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declare me winner atiku

the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, has filed a petition before the presidential election tribunal to challenge President Muhammadu Buhari’s reelection.

Atiku filed the petition before the tribunal in Abuja on Monday, asking it to declare him the authentic winner of the election or order that a fresh poll should be conducted.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) had declared Buhari as a winner but the PDP candidate rejected the result, alleging widespread irregularities.

Addressing journalists, Emmanuel Enoidem, PDP national legal adviser, said: “We asked that our candidate who won the election massively across the country be declared the winner.

“In the alternative, we also asked that the election is set aside on the ground of irregularity which was apparent across the country.”

He also said Atiku and the PDP have in their team 20 senior advocates of Nigeria (SAN) “so we are confident.”

“We have also lined up more than 400 witnesses that are going to testify in this petition,” he said.

Segun Sowunmi, a spokesman of the Atiku Campaign Organisation, also told TheCable that the development is “the first step to getting Nigeria working again”.

He said: “The judiciary should do what is right; examine the issues and deliver to Nigerians the kind of judgment that represents the fundamental operating principle of why we are in a democracy and why the judiciary is the last hope of the common man.”

ATIKU’S GRIEVANCES

The PDP presidential candidate had described the election as the worst in Nigeria’s history.

He had alleged there were irregularities on the part of INEC staff as well as “heavy militarisation” of the electoral process.

Atiku had also alleged the “disruption of voting in strongholds of the PDP in Lagos, Akwa-Ibom, Rivers and diverse other states, with the authorities doing little or nothing and in some cases facilitating these unfortunate situations.”

He was defeated by Buhari with over three million votes but his party claimed it has the “real” results from the polling units across the country.

Source: Skytrendnews.com

Nelly Agwu is an educationist, a Blogger, graduate of History. Very dynamic and a realist. A mouthpiece of the oppressed. Easy going and a Philanthropist.

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Politics

APC Chairmanship Race, Am Most Qualified Says Barrister Mohammad Bello Mustapha.

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Barrister Mohammad Bello Mustapha has more chances than any other aspirants for the post of All Progressives Congress Chairmanship. In AriseTv Morning Show today, he said having toured the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria and consultated widely, the youths should be able to vote for their own considering the fact that 60% of the Nigeria population are youths.

Bello posited that he will revitalise the APC into a strong force as it strives towards excellence in the political scene of Nigeria. Despite the numerous challenges,  Bello is committed to ensuring that the future and good will of the APC is not jeopardised.

In his words ‘I will give every wing of the Party a sense of belonging and will reposition and reconstitute the APC ahead of 2023.

He then called on all Progressives in APC and Nigeria to stand by him and give him support needed.

 

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Politics

The Public Sphere With Chido Nwakanma Moblising Ndigbo For Voters Registration.

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INEC has commenced voter registration for the 2023 elections beginning 28 June 2021 until August.

It comes against the backdrop of some confusion in the South-East concerning its political future given recent events. INEC planned the voters’ roll initially for February 2021, and this column noted that it would play a critical role towards 2023. I called on the Igbo Nation to organise for it.
I repeat the call I made in November 2020 concerning this matter.

No excuse would suffice anymore for failing to mobilise Ndigbo to register. Where are the South-East Governors Forum, the Local Governments, and the political parties? Where are the socio-cultural and political groups of the region? Oruo la na omume.

No one should plead distraction because of the arrest and trial of IPOB leader Nnamdi Kanu. The strategic game is to ensure full participation wherever the dice rolls. The Igbo Elite Consensus is to continue with one Nigeria, seek restructuring and pursue the Presidency. Voter numbers are critical. I invite you to factor in this exercise.

INEC records show that 42 000 citizens registered in the first two days of opening the portal. More than any other region, the South-East needs to ensure that its citizens register in the required numbers and at the right places. In the 2019 exercise, the South-East posted a minor voter registration of 10.05m or 11.97 per cent. It was lower than even the distressed and war-torn North East that posted 11.2m or 13.4%. The North-West posted 20.13m or 24%, and the South-West 16.29m or 19%.

The breakdown for the South-East shows Abia, 1, 932, 892; Anambra, 2, 447, 996; Ebonyi, 1, 459, 933; Enugu, 1, 944, 016 and Imo, 2, 272, 293. The states and the entire region can do much better than what these numbers tell.

Numbers are a critical index in politics as in business. The South-East prides itself on its understanding of numbers in business. However, it fails to do so in the critical arena of the struggle for acquisition, control, and utilisation of state power, otherwise called politics. The region must now understand the numbers game in politics.
The South-East seeks, deservedly, an opportunity to run the country with its own as President come 2023.

The ground game is critical for this aspiration to count and for others to take it seriously. The ground game starts now with mobilisation for voter registration.
Adequate numbers will serve as a bargaining chip in the hard-nosed negotiations ahead for both the Presidency and reckoning in other areas in the country.

Many factors account for the region’s deficient registration, and most of it is self-inflicted. Groups who have confused young people over the past few years, canvassing against registration for the census and voting caused part of it, while a large population of the region’s people live outside.

A breakdown of the numbers would probably show a 60-40 or even 50-50 split between those who live at home and citizens outside the homeland. South-Easterners contributed to the numbers in the South-West, North Central and the North-West, and the South-South. In 2023, that rationalisation will not count. The region can minimise the numbers outside and create bulk.

Then there is the matter of voter apathy by persons from the region. There is much lamentation on the trending village square of the mobile age, WhatsApp, but not much else. Citizens do not register, attend political events, or show interest in their previously engaged citizenship activities within their towns unions. They are yet to transfer participation in village developmental activities to the political arena of parties and elected governments of legislature and executive.

The elite and the middle class are worse as they represent all bluster and no muster. The call is on the political class of the South East, the immediate beneficiaries of the political permutations if they turn out aright.

The various Igbo socio-cultural and political associations should now step up to the plate. They range from Ohanaeze through Aka Ikenga, Nzuko Umunna, Igbo Bu Igbo, the Society of Igbo Professionals, and many others.
Mobilise Ndigbo for voter registration.

The mobilisation must be total. Mobilise the people emotionally, intellectually, physically, and fiscally. Ndigbo must replicate in July and August 2021 the mass return to the homeland in December and August. They must move from the major cities outside and return to the motherland to register for voting. These groups can and should organise and sponsor transportation for willing citizens from the major hubs. Consider Lagos and Ibadan as take off for persons in the South-West. Abuja would serve persons in the FCT and neighbouring states.

The North-West should use Kaduna and Sokoto. Then Jos and Maiduguri for the North-East.
The arrest of the Bete Noire of the elite, Nnamdi Kanu, provides the opportunity for them to show relevance by mobilising citizens to register for voting. The advantages will accrue mainly to the political class. Those advantages will count for whatever be the consensus of the region on a political direction.

It is time to stop the play-acting by the elite, the middle class, and the political class. These groups need to put their money in support of their mouth and ambitions. They should pay for the mass return of our citizens to register for voting.

No, it will not suffice to call on citizens to come home. Incentivise them. Leadership involves paying the price on behalf of the many and leading the way. Leaders should earn their pips. The cost should not be a deterrent, and it is not much. We are looking at about 120-150 luxury buses over a month. Others could also sponsor PJs!
Citizens should prepare to take a one-week break for this exercise. The calculation takes two days of travel and at least two days to ensure that the registration happens. Allow for bureaucratic hiccups or inertia. Then return to your base.

The Ohanaeze Strategy Team should link with socio-cultural groups and the secretariats of all the political parties in the region.

The parties should be at the forefront. Citizen mobilisation for voting is one of the primary functions of political parties. The time is now to do so.

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Former INEC Chairman Atahiru Jega Describes President Mohammadu Buhari Government As Disappointing.

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The immediate past chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Attahiru Jega, has taken a swipe at the Buhari administration, describing its performance as disappointing.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with Daily Trust on Sunday, Jega, who conducted the election that ushered in President Muhmmadu Buhari in 2015, said the high expectations on the government by Nigerians was largely dashed, with many people worried about the future of the country. “Unfortunately, he has disappointed so many people. He still has time to correct things if he has the capacity to do that. But frankly, his government has been very disappointing. Many people wish him well but are worried about the direction the country is taking,” he said. Jega, a onetime vice-chancellor of the Bayero University, Kano (BUK), said the Buhari administration had been very inept in managing peaceful coexistence in the country.

“Governance has been very poor at the federal level and many of the states, that is why we are seeing challenges everywhere; whether it is insurgency, banditry, armed robbery or other things,” he added. He said the accumulated misgivings by sections of the citizens led to frustrations, which “find expression in these demands for restructuring.” The Presidency last night declined to react to Jega’s comments. When contacted separately by our reporter, the two presidential spokespersons, Femi Adesina and Garba Shehu, said they would not want to join issues with the former INEC chairman. The professor of Political Science also described Nigerian politicians as the most reckless, most selfish and most self-serving in the world. “We have a lot to do; and the first thing to do is to get it right by securing the mindset of our politicians from selfishness, greed and reckless banditry. Actually, many of them are also bandits, not just those who stand by the roadside with AK 47. To steal recklessly from government’s coffers and turn hundreds, if not millions of people into poverty, deny children the opportunity to go to school because they have stolen the money that would have gone into education or was supposed to buy arms and ammunition for the military, to the extent that they can no longer fight banditry, that is banditry itself,” he said. Calls for restructuring Jega also joined the call for President Buhari to restructure the country before the end of his administration. His call for restructuring rhymed with increasing national calls to revisit Nigeria’s current political structure, which was re-echoed at this year’s annual Daily Trust Dialogue held on January 21, with Jega among the speakers.

The former INEC chairman, however, said the inability of the present administration to placate the various segments of the country was responsible for the growing uproar in the polity. “We should define an agenda between now and 2023. What do we want to achieve in regard to restructuring? I will say that it is a priority to de-concentrate power and resources from the federal to the state government. This is achievable,” he said. Competence to determine who succeeds Buhari On the agitation for power shift in 2023, Jega said competence and merit should determine who takes over from President Buhari to accelerate the development of the country.

He said he would not contest for the presidency in 2023, adding that the country was not ripe for e-voting. He advised that it should be done in phases, starting with urban centres. Jega, a former president of the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU), also proffered solutions to the lingering strikes by the union. “Nigeria needs to get out of that cycle of strikes, but the government has an obligation to be proactive in ensuring that these challenges are put behind us,” he said.

Source CKN.

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