PDP Accuses APC Of Planning To Use Membership Drive To Hijack 2015 Polls
SAN FRANCISCO, February 07, (THEWILL) - The ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Friday raised the alarm over what it alleged as the plan by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to use its ongoing nationwide membership registration to build a phantom membership base to hijack the 2015 polls.
Speaking at a media briefing in Abuja, the National Publicity Secretary of the PDP, Chief Olisa Metuh, alleged that APC was planning to use the membership drive to flaunt a phoney figure to be used during the forthcoming polls.
Condemning the use of the polling booths of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for the current exercise, PDP blamed the electoral commission for allowing its facility to be used for a partisan exercise.
The statement read: ' Our great party has received reports from various states, calling our attention to an on-going, well planned clandestine moves by the All Progressives Congress (APC) to lay mines in the way of a successful conduct of 2015 general elections, using its nation wide membership registration as a ruse.
'It is very unfortunate that while the PDP led Federal Government is solidifying the foundation of a credible electoral system it has already laid, and INEC yet to release the fine details of the 2015 general elections timetable, which is still a year ahead, the APC is already introducing weird inventions, calculated to torpedo the process and blow sky-high, the huge expectations of Nigerians and the international community.
'We are all aware that the APC is currently conducting a nation wide registration of its members.
The Peoples Democratic Party whole heartedly welcomes this development as it tallies with our avowed commitment to political plurality and the freeing of the democratic space so as to enable every Nigerian find expression on whatever political platform that he or she so wishes.
This is because we firmly believe in competitive democracy as an antidote to mediocrity and complacency.
That informed the choice, the resolve and the commitment of the PDP led Federal Government to the rule of law, due process, freedom of information and the non-negotiability of free, fair and credible elections.
'However, it is clear from the statements, actions and the activities of the leaders of the APC, that the opposition has only been changing names without changing its character.
Their commitment to being a credible alternative, leaves a yawning a gap in the face of its furious self willed handicap to genuinely contribute in building the fabrics of our democracy.
'Our investigations revealed that part of the plot by the APC is use to this fraudulent membership registration exercise to hype a phantom public support after which it will declare a particular bogus figure and create a false impression of massive public followership ahead of the 2015 general elections.
'Gentle men and ladies, we wish to alert Nigerians therefore to the incontrovertible evidence at our disposal to the effect that the APC is sadly and currently using every foul means at its disposal to build a particular membership figure, running into tens of millions, which it intends to use as a justification to fault, dispute, reject and subsequently take to violence when it loses the 2015 general elections.
'This fraudulent membership figure, meant to create an unexisting mass followership is to be maniacally presented, projected and defended by the APC, using its well known unethically hypodermic propaganda tools as an anticipated real voter strength, below which it will carry out its threat to unleash mayhem on the nation as contained in its allegory of the monkey, the baboon and blood.
'To achieve this , the APC officials and members have been going round the wards and polling centres , using INEC polling locations and as well as lying to unsuspecting Nigerians that the party's membership registration is an INEC voter registration exercise for the 2015 elections.
This is to hoodwink them into registering as members of APC.
'We reliably gathered also that in the states controlled by the party, pupils and students are lured or persuaded to get the passport photographs of their parents and guardians, which are thereafter secretly affixed to the APC membership forms without the knowledge of the innocent students or their parents.
'We wish to condemn this brazen hijack of INEC polling booths for a partisan membership registration.
The unlawful use of INEC polling booths is a clear violation of laid down electoral norms and rules that safeguard their sanctity for the purpose of elections and against illegal conversion for partisan reasons.
'Indeed we find it shocking and curious that INEC whose responsibility is to safeguard against this sort of aberration has not only kept mum as the APC fraudulently uses its name for this infamous agenda but has folded hands in the face of this abuse and illegal conversion of its property, therefore, raising suspicions of duplicity in this well orchestrated design to sabotage the 2015 general elections.
'The worst of all frauds no doubt, is to cheat one's self and the APC is irremediably a victim of this.
By trying to build a phantom membership, the party forgot that no structure pivoted on sand can survive the pull of winds.
They also forgot that the whirlwind of membership fraud they are attempting to sow will be bountifully rewarded with massive storm of electoral mishap.
'Though we are not surprised by the development, we did not however reckon that desperation to grab power has taken this dimension so early in the day.
'We wish to remind the APC that no political party has the monopoly of mischief and that this level of grand deceit is actually a monumental crime against democracy.
While the PDP is desirous of winning elections, we do not wish to descend to the level of illegality, violence and deceit.
'We therefore wish to inform Nigerians that the APC membership registration is not an INEC organized civic exercise as they have been made to believe but one of the numerous APC's deceitful schemes to steal their mandate.
'We further wish to urge all Nigerians, especially the civil society and all lovers of democracy to be on their guard and resist attempts by the APC to surreptitiously use foul means to buoy up the membership base of a political vessel, whose captains are contrastingly inclined but selfishly united in quest to capture power, through fraudulent and violent means and thereafter, divide the people and take us back to Egypt.