The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Kano State Chapter called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and security agencies to ensure that the Saturday supplementary election in the state is free and fair.
The Acting Chairman of the Kano State PDP Mr Rabiu Bichi, made the call in a statement on Wednesday, also appealing to INEC and security agencies to be neutral during the elections.
Bichi said that security agencies had a duty to ensure that voters and their votes were protected from harassment, intimidation and manipulations from any quarters.
He urged the presidency to compel all political, religious, business and traditional leaders in the state to conscientise the political actors on the need to keep peace during the polls. “We also want them to practise the principle of politics without bitterness’ and the president should prevail on the Kano State Government to let peace reign.
“In addition, it is our hope and prayer that you would use your good offices to ensure that the re-run election is not disrupted at some levels,” Bichi also urged INEC to be firm, uncompromising and transparent; and ensure anyone found subverting the electoral process was dealt with accordingly.
He further suggested that the electoral umpire should collate election results of all the polling units at the INEC headquarters in the state.
He noted that this would reduce risks of attacks from hired thugs, especially in areas that were far from the state capital.
Bichi said that vote buying, compromising security personnel and use of arms by thugs to disrupt the re-run elections in Kano were already brewing. He also called on all relevant stakeholders to be vigilant and ensure credible polls, saying the call became necessary because the party had received “credible and reliable intelligence regarding the plans and evil machination of some groups’’.
“Since the March 9, elections and its declaration as inconclusive by INEC, we have repeatedly witnessed unprecedented PVC (Permanent Voter Card) buying across the 44 local government areas of Kano.
“Agents have been deceiving unsuspecting and vulnerable women by taking advantage of their impoverishment by paying them N5, 000 to surrender their PVC,’’ he claimed.
The chairman further alleged that many perpetrators of these fraudulent acts had been apprehended and handed over to the police.
He said that the culprits, along with others that were nabbed in other places, had been handed over to the police and were being investigated. He claimed that the PDP also received reliable information that cloned card readers had been acquired and pre-loaded with the PVCs that were bought to be swapped with the original card readers.
Bichi, however, said in spite of all these alleged evil plans, the people were determined to exercise their mandate by casting their votes for the candidate of their choice.
He urged all political stakeholders to play according to the rules to ensure free and fair elections. (NAN)