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INEC lack capacity to conduct free and fair general elections – PDP

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has said there is huge doubt over the ability of INEC to conduct free and fair general elections in 2019 following the commission’s silence over the alleged discovery of thousands of its Permanent Voter Cards (PVCs) at the private residence of the sacked director general of the Department of State Service (DSS), Lawal Daura. The opposition party in a statement on Monday, August 13, through its spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, urged the National Assembly to investigate the allegation against the former DSS boss and verify whether the chairman of INEC, Yakubu Mahmood, is culpable in the issue, Daily Trust reports.

The party said the silence by the INEC chairman and officers of the commission over the issue suggests the commission’s complicity in the allegation. “The PDP says Prof. Mahmood should stop playing the ostrich and immediately come out clear and inform Nigerians how thousands of electoral materials as sensitive as PVCs, under his watch, found its way to the custody of a kinsman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) presidential aspirant,” the party said. “Already, Nigerians are aware that a blood relation of President Buhari is in charge of operations in INEC.

“On account of this established relationship between President Buhari and this INEC official, Mahmood owes Nigerians explanation as to the source of the PVCs allegedly found in possession of Daura.” Meanwhile, polling booths are henceforth to be position in a way to make it difficult for people to see how voters cast their votes during elections, a Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), announced in Awka on Monday, August 13. Nkwachukwu Orji, the REC in charge of Anambra, who made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) said that the measure was to make it impossible for anyone to know who a voter voted for. The measure comes against the backdrop of massive vote-buying reported in recent elections in the country, including the governorship election in Ekiti, which analysts said, was characterised by vote-buying.

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