Jonathan flout­ing cam­paign rules - APC

Daily Trust - - FRONT PAGE - By Balarabe Alka­s­sim

The All Pro­gres­sives Congress (APC) yes­ter­day asked the In­de­pen­dent na­tional Elec­toral Com­mis­sion (INEC) to sanc­tion the Peo­ples Demo­cratic Party (PDP) for flout­ing the na­tion’s elec­toral laws by en­gag­ing in cam­paigns be­fore the time al­lowed by the laws gov­ern­ing elec­tions in the coun­try.

APC de­scribed PDP’s re­cent ac­tiv­i­ties like lib­er­a­tion, fam­ily or unity ral­lies across the coun­try, as a guise to be­gin early cam­paigns which they say is con­trary to the na­tion’s laws.

In a state­ment is­sued in Lon­don on Sun­day by its in­terim na­tional pub­lic­ity sec­re­tary, Al­haji Lai Mo­hammed, the party said Pres­i­dent Good­luck Jonathan has ex­hib­ited gross abuse of ex­ec­u­tive power by leading his party to pre­ma­turely kick-start the cam­paign for the 2015 elec­tions.

It called on INEC to as­sert its in­de­pen­dence, by sanc­tion­ing the PDP say­ing no one is above the law.

The party warned that if INEC fails to act, then it will lose the moral author­ity to stop other par­ties from cam­paign­ing ahead of time.

“Hid­ing un­der nomen­cla­ture, this Pres­i­dent has led his party to en­gage in brazen law­less­ness and shame­less im­punity. They have gained an un­due ad­van­tage over other par­ties, or beaten the gun, in ath­let­ics par­lance. There­fore, they should suf­fer the con­se­quences of their ac­tion, the least of which is a strong pub­lic re­buke, to be fol­lowed by stip­u­lated sanc­tions if they per­sist.

“We know the Pres­i­dent’s con­niv­ing han­dlers and ad­vis­ers do not ap­pre­ci­ate that a higher stan­dard of con­duct is ex­pected of the Pres­i­dent of Nigeria, through his state­ments, ac­tions and body lan­guage. Un­for­tu­nately, ev­ery­thing points to the fact that the Pres­i­dent, by his se­rial vi­o­la­tion, is telling Nige­ri­ans and the whole world loud and clear that the com­ing elec­tions will nei­ther be free, fair nor cred­i­ble!’’ APC said.

The party said when Pres­i­dent Jonathan boasted on Fri­day, at a rally in Enugu that the PDP would cap­ture the South­East in 2015, he was en­gag­ing in elec­tion­eer­ing, rather than re­uni­fi­ca­tion, cam­paign and ad­vised Pres­i­dent Jonathan to con­cen­trate his en­ergy on putting Nige­ri­ans back to work, en­sur­ing the se­cu­rity of lives and property and stop­ping the mas­sive loot­ing of the com­mon wealth un­der his watch.

“A Pres­i­dent who can­not even com­mis­er­ate with the fam­i­lies of in­no­cent school chil­dren who were vi­o­lently hacked down un­der his watch has no qualms about skirt­ing around the scene of the das­tardly act in the name of elec­tion­eer­ing cam­paign. Yet he has the temer­ity to point ac­cus­ing fin­gers at oth­ers. What a cruel irony!’’ the party said.

Pres­i­dent Jonathan

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