Saturday, February 7, 2015

THE SECRETS: Presidency Declares War On INEC And Jega

In spite of general clamour by Nigerians, the Presidency has asked INEC to postpone the general election by six weeks based on security threats.
The Chairman of INEC, Prof. Attahiru Jega, has admitted that his hands are tied because security for the poll is outside his control, hence he has invited all chairmen and secretaries of the registered political parties and Resident Electoral Commissioners (RECs) for a meeting today.

The meeting is expected to consider 4 key issues and finally decide if to go ahead with the poll or not.

In fact, indications have emerged that Jega is under pressure from above to extend the election willy-nilly. Also, INEC commissioners were being threatened to either postpone the election or be ready to quit at the expiration of their tenure in June this year.

A dependable source said all but two commissioners are due for reappointment in June.

But INEC was undecided on whether to stand its ground that the polls should hold as scheduled, yield to the six-week extension or opt for a three/four-week postponement.

It was evident on Friday night that the President Goodluck Jonathan-led Federal Government will not provide security for INEC and its field officers unless the poll is postponed based on the PDP's wish.

Findings showed that FG’s demand for a six-week extension was contained in the presentation made to the Council of State by Jega on Thursday at its session at the Presidential Villa.

In the 12-page presentation, “Preparations for the 2015 General Elections Progress Report,” made available to The Nation by a member of the Council, Jega confirmed the readiness of INEC for the poll, but said he could not ignore the alarm raised by security agencies.

Jega said: “Yesterday (Wednesday), for example, we received a letter from the Office of the National Security Adviser(NSA), informing us of recent developments in four (4) of the North-East states, stating that safety and security cannot be guaranteed during the proposed election period, adducing reasons why this is so, and strongly advising that INEC considers rescheduling the elections by at least six (6) weeks, within the provisions of the electoral legal framework, and within which time span it hoped to restore sufficient normalcy for elections to hold.

“This is a new development that INEC cannot certainly ignore or take lightly.”

Notwithstanding, Jega insisted that INEC was prepared for the 2015 elections more than it did in 2011.

He added: “From the preceding review of the state of preparedness of INEC, in respect of matters under its control, it is clear that in spite of the discernible challenges, things are not as bad as they have been made to appear in recent media coverage and public discourses. We are doing our best under very difficult circumstances.

“In determining whether or not INEC is adequately prepared to conduct the February 2015 elections as scheduled, we should separate what is under the control of the commission and what is outside its control.

“For the things under the commission’s control, our accomplishments are to such a degree that we can conduct the election, in spite of identifiable challenges.

“Compared with the 2011 general elections, for instance, our systems are definitely more robust now.

“Among others, we have greatly improved register of voters, having removed over four million multiple registrants; voters will use PVCs; and accreditation using card readers will reduce the likelihood of fraud.

“Consequently, although our state of preparedness may not be 100 per cent or perfect, and although a bit more time of additional preparation would enable us improve and perfect the current level of preparedness, we believe that we’re ready for the elections as planned.”

But Jega added a caveat that INEC had to appreciate certain developments (security) beyond its control.

He also said since over 65 per cent of the PVCs had been collected, Nigerians can go to poll.

Looks like the Presidency is already at war with Jega as they no longer have access to him and Jega himself is not ready to meet with anybody working for the Presidency so as to remain neutral.

The Presidency is so angry that Prof Jega is no longer giving them attention, to the extent that Doyin Okupe called Jega "A Liar" on national television. The fight against INEC and Jega is that serious.


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