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APC jittery of BVAS, says PDP, faults Adamu

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.I was misquoted on deployment of system- National Chairman

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Obiora Ifoh, Abuja

Ahead of the 2023 general election, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) said the All Progressives Congress (APC) is used to manipulation and they are jittery about the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS).

The Independent National Electoral Committee (INEC) has insisted that it will deploy BVAS in next year’s elections.

APC National Chairman, Adamu Abdullahi had on Wednesday said he is concerned over how ready INEC is to deploy technologies in transmitting election results in real-time.

Reacting to this, the Director of Strategic Communications of the PDP Presidential campaign organizations, Dele Momodu while interacting with journalists, Thursday, expressed surprise that at this time and age APC will still want us to operate analog elections.

He said the world has gone digital and anything that will eliminate political thuggery, cheating and rigging is welcome, adding that “I will expect any reasonable political party to support it”.

“So for APC to say it does not support it, there should be no transmission of results from voting points, it’s like sending us back 50 years ago into antiquity. At PDP we will support transparent elections only”, Momdu added.

He continued “and we know that we stand to benefit from it. Anybody who is completely jittery knows why it’s complaining because they (APC) are used to manipulating elections. We told them in Osun. And we won. When people decided that this time, we will not allow you to rig, and of course, electronic technology helped in Osun.

“I have a notion that is what APC is running away from, that if they could defeat us in Osun as an incumbent then, there is no power of incumbency again”.

Momodu who expressed confidence in the readiness of INEC to deploy BVAS in the next year’s election said once you use it, there is nothing like incumbency, what ever votes you record is what will be published and what will be approved.

He stated “So APC is very jittery about it. And the world can see who is jittery. APC is very jittery, and we will defeat them. There’s no doubt about that.

“Let me tell you, I believe that APC is already winding down. And when a political party begins to wind down, its ability to misbehave becomes weakened.

“But those who know President Muhammadu Buhari, know that once he is determined to do anything, he will do it. INEC is been blackmailed by APC there is no question about it. They’ve done that in the past. Like when they extended their party primary. They were not supposed to extend the dates. The date was supposed to be sacrosanct, but APC made sure that they bullied INEC into submission”.

He expressed hope that INEC will not be bullied into accepting what would be so dangerous for Nigeria.

Momodu who described this election as crucial said “the country is not the personal property of anybody. APC has tried its best. Now we’re able to juxtapose the PDP and the APC, and anybody who is fair-minded enough would agree that APC deserves to rest.

“However, those who are close to President Buhari have told us that if there is one thing is determined to achieve if he has failed in any other way, is that he must be able to give Nigeria the most transparent elections and I pray he will deliver on it”.

In a related development, PDP Presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar campaign spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan said the alleged APC rejection of BVAS confirms it has no genuine followership.

Ologbondiyan in a statement Thursday, maintained that “the APC has realized that given its mass failures across the spectrum of our polity, it does not enjoy the support of Nigerians and as such is scared of any process that will deliver a credible balloting in the elections.

The statement further read “APC’s mortal fear of mass rejection at the polls is directly behind its unnecessary tantrums against the electronic transmission of results.

“It is abundantly clear that the APC’s plan is to return our electoral process to the days of mass rigging through the use Incidence Forms, ballot box snatching, ballot stuffing and other electoral malpractices.

“Having become frustrated because of the introduction of technology to improve the electoral process, the APC is seeking ways to manipulate the elections to enable it to re-enact the horrible electoral seasons of its devious act of holding electoral officers by their jugulars and forcing them to write results for APC candidates.

“The APC will desire to deploy the use of armed helicopters in order to chase away Nigerians from their polling stations so as to write results and force same on INEC officials.

“The Atiku/Okowa Campaign urges Nigerians to remain vigilant on the decision reached by INEC to promote the integrity of our electoral process”.
Meanwhile, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has debunked a statement credited to its chairman, Abdullahi Adamu, where he kicked against the use of Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) for the 2023 election.

National Publicity Secretary of the party, Felix Morka, while addressing journalists on Thursday, said, Adamu was only expressing concern over the use of BVAS, considering the network challenges and electricity supply in some remote villages.

APC chairman on Wednesday expressed worries over electronic transmission of results and the use of BVAS during a visit by the a Commonwealth delegation.

During the press briefing at the APC secretariat, Morka said, it was just an observation and a challenge for the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for better preparation.

The statements read in full: “A section of the media is awash with comments credited to the National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Abdullahi Adamu on the deployment of the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) and the Results Viewing Portal (IReV), otherwise known as electronic transmission of election results, for the 2023 general election.

“Media reports that Chairman Adamu kicked against INEC’s decision to deploy BVAS and electronic transmission of results is patently false, and constitutes an unfair misrepresentation of the National Chairman’s comments.

“At a meeting with the  Commonwealth pre-election delegation, yesterday, Wednesday, November 23, 2022, in response to a question regarding the country’s preparations for next year’s election, the National Chairman noted that while preparations were in top gear, he tasked INEC to take effective steps to bridge any gaps that may be created by electricity and telecommunications network challenges in certain outlying voting districts in the country in order to ensure a smooth and successful deployment of BVAS and other technologies to ensure free and transparent elections.

“To be clear, Chairman Adamu did not kick against the deployment of BVAS or electronic transmission of results as erroneously reported by sections of the media.

“The APC administration of President Muhammadu Buhari midwifed the successful reform of the Electoral Act, the introduction of (BVAS) among other technological innovation, and has superintended the conduct of credible, free, fair and transparent elections in Edo, Anambra, Ekiti and Osun States.

“Our Party and Government remain committed to the highest levels of electoral transparency and democratic consolidation in our country.”

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