Politics

Don’t Turn FCT Election into Battle Field, PDP Warns APC

...Says 133 - member campaign council for FCT LG poll laughable

By Joshua Omoloye, Abuja

Opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has derided the ruling All Progressive Congress (APC) over its composition of a 133 member National Campaign Council for the February 12 Federal Capital Territory (FCT) council elections.

The PDP knocked the ruling party for act of intimidating other parties in a war-like manner, warning APC not to turn the Federal capital into battle ground.

Minority Leader, House of Representatives, Hon Ndudi Elumelu took the opportunity of the occasion of a courtesy visit by members of PDP BoT to the party’s National Assembly Caucus On Tuesday to lampoon the APC, wondering why the party want to turn FCT into a battle field.

Elumelu expressed surprise at the party who he said failed severally to hold its national convention, now carrying hammer to kill ant.

The APC had on the list, 16 serving governors, 12 serving ministers and countless numbers of other public office holders at the federal level to “militarize” Area Council Election in FCT.

“This to us in PDP is laughable because throughout the 16 years we were in power at the centre, there was no time such a busy body campaign council was set up for FCT Area Council election.

“Unfortunately for APC, the 133- member campaign council it set up, cannot deliver FCT for it because there is no way aliens or strangers in any place, will displace landlords,” he said.

The National Assembly caucus of the PDP at the occasion called on President Muhammadu Buhari not to hesitate in signing the re – amended 2010 Electoral Act (Amendment) Bill 2022 into law.

Leader of PDP NASS Caucus and Senate Minority Leader, Enyinnaya Abaribe said after having acceded to request made by President Muhammadu Buhari to rework the earlier rejected electoral bill, the bill should be signed without any delay.

“The President in rejecting the earlier one transmitted to him in November last year, said indirect and consensus mode of primary elections were added to the new one as requested by President Buhari.

“Now that we have bent backwards, no any excuse or reason should be given again. Provisions of the bill are very critical for expected credibility of the 2023 general elections,” he said.

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Speaking in the same vein the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives, Hon Ndudi Elumelu lay claim to allegation that governors on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, are lobbying the President not to sign the bill.

He vowed that the PDP and forward looking Nigerians will resist this attempt if it is true, to protect other very important provisions in the bill like section 52, which deals with electronic transmission of election results.

“The plan of using mandatory direct primaries to scuttle the bill has failed because the National Assembly has widened the scope as requested for by the President.

“No any other unresolved issues or observations is left in the bill transmitted to the President on Monday this week.

“No more excuses, no more delay, it should be signed in the interest of credibility and sanctity of electoral process in the country,” he said.

The Clerk of the National Assembly Mr. Olatunde Amos Ojo had on Monday, transmitted the authenticated copies of the Electoral Bill 2022 to President Muhammadu Buhari.

This was done in accordance with the provisions of Section 58 (3) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) and the Acts Authentication Act Cap. A2 LFN 2004.

Mr. President had withheld assent to the Electoral Bill 2021 transmitted to him on 19th November 2021. The Electoral Bill was thereafter reworked by the National Assembly and both the Senate and the House of Representatives passed same on 25th January 2022.

Chairman, PDP BoT, Senator Walid Jibrin said the organ was in National Assembly on a courtesy visit to the NASS caucus to appreciate the role they played in strengthening the party.

He urged the caucus to further work alongside other organs to ensure that PDP wrestle power from the APC in 2023.

Jubril said the Boat will pay similar visit to the PDP Governors Forum under the leadership of Governor Aminu Tambuwal of Sokoto State.

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