From Ndubuisi Orji, Abuja
Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has alleged plots by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to influence the outcome of petition before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal.
It claimed the APC was apprehensive given the weight of evidence against its candidate and refusal of majority of Nigerians to accept the outcome of the February 25 poll.
PDP National Publicity Secretary, Debo Ologunagba, at a press briefing, yesterday, in Abuja, alleged intimidation, harassment, threats and vicious attacks by APC leaders against Nigerian youths and eminent Nigerian personalities following the petition.
“The alleged planned onslaught by APC leaders on eminent Nigerians and our democratic institutions, including the judiciary, stems from APC’s apprehensions given the weight of evidence against it, as well as the continuing refusal by majority of Nigerians to accept the outcome of the flawed presidential election.
“There are apprehensions in the public space, having regards to the reputation of certain individuals within the highest level of the APC who have demonstrated capacity and proclivity to compromise democratic institutions in our country. The PDP calls on the APC and its leaders to immediately come clean and publicly address Nigerians and the world on these disturbing allegations and revelations which are already in the public domain. Further to this is the provocative resort by the APC and its leaders to threaten Nigerians with treason for speaking out against the manipulations of our democratic processes by the APC.
“For emphasis, majority of Nigerians are insisting on the review of the February 25, 2023 presidential election because it was marred by wide-spread manipulations, open alteration of genuine election results from the Polling Units, allocation of fictitious figures to the APC and brazen violation of the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), the Electoral Act, 2022 as well as INEC Manual and Guidelines by INEC itself in its declaration of a winner of the election.
“The bizarre response by INEC, which is an umpire that ought to be independent, to the petition of the PDP and our candidate, Atiku Abubakar, requesting for the dismissal of our petition, is further evidence of the complicity, corruption and compromise of INEC by the APC. It is instructive for INEC and the APC to note that the tribunal hearing is part of the electoral process. The APC and INEC are therefore advised to halt further steps to hinder the ability of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal to dispense justice in the matter in accordance with the law
“The PDP, therefore, restates its call on the judiciary to resist and insulate itself from the alleged and reported antics of the APC in the discharge of its constitutional duties as independent and impartial arbiter in the pending petition before the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal. It is imperative to state that the reckless violation by INEC of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended), the Electoral Act, 2022, INEC Guidelines and Manual in the 2023 presidential election portend grave consequences to our democracy and political stability as a country.
“The only way to guarantee peace, unity and stability of our nation is to uphold the Will of the people as expressed at the polling units in the February 25, 2023 presidential election and the PDP is confident in the ability of the Judiciary to discharge its constitutional duties in this regard independently.”