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Doctors Union: Elections Postponement Could Trigger Military Coup

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SAN FRANCISCO, February 11, (THEWILL) – The Medical and Dental Consultants Association of Nigeria (MDCAN) Wednesday faulted the postponement of 2015 general elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), warning that it could trigger military coup.

In a statement signed by its President, Dr. Steven Oluwole, after its National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting in Abuja, MDCAN described the polls shift as an insult to the collective intelligence of Nigerians.

According to the association, “Insecurity as basis for postponement of elections sets the stage for military adventurism should the insurgency remain in six weeks time .”

While lamenting the suffering of Nigerians in the Northeast, who are now refugees in their own country, the association commended its members in the northeast who continue to provide medical and dental care services without adequate protection .

Noting the inability of the Federal Government to protect the territorial integrity of Nigeria as well as the increasing boldness of the insurgents to take the battle to military bases, MDCAN lamented that Boko Haram is gradually achieving its primary objective to control Nigerian territory.

The statement expressed worry that the Nigerian Army which is reputed for rolling out tanks and armoured personnel carriers to crush peaceful demonstration of students and labour organisations

has no visible frontline against the rag-tag Boko Haram gunmen.

While noting that the military hardware displayed by Boko Haram will be destroyed by determined vigilantes let alone the military apparatus of a State, MDCAN said the Nigerian Army has transited from a fighting to a frightened force holed-up in barricaded barracks like scared sparrows

“Nigeria Army struggling to defend its bases raises the question who is

defending Nigeria people?,” the statement said, adding “ Boko Haram is existential threat to Nigeria.”

The MDCAN however advised President Goodluck Jonathan to reorganise the defense structure of the military, saying the President should also rid his government of the Boko Haram sympathisers, which he publicly admitted exist.

On the general elections, it said INEC had stated its preparedness to hold the elections, although there were issues with the PVC, which were not sufficient to alter the election dates.

It described the convoluted, contrived, and bogus reasons given for the postponement of the elections as an insult to the collective intelligence of Nigerians.

“ Security Chiefs are public servants who were aware of the elections for at least a year . Security Chiefs who have failed to contain Boko Haram insurgency in six years now scheduled six weeks to do so. Insecurity as basis for postponement of elections sets the stage for military adventurism should the insurgency remain in six weeks time,” the association said.

Asking whether the President gave orders to his security Chiefs to prepare for the elections or whether his were his orders ignored, MDCAN said the security Chiefs had betrayed their duty to be subordinate to civil authority just as they have defied and set the stage for potential truncation of democracy for security reasons.

It therefore recommended that the Security Chiefs that failed to prepare for the elections should be relieved of their duties effective immediately by President Jonathan just as it advised that elections should be rescheduled for a fortnight.

MDCAN warned that failure or reluctance of the President to act speedily and decisively may put democratic governance in jeopardy and plunge the country into chaos that will fulfill the forecast of some foreign powers. It also warned that the President will lose the legitimacy to rule if he allows the fundamental principles of democracy to be violated and the will of the people that elected him to be derailed.