Polls Postponement: Tinubu, Na'Abba, Shekarau react
Governor Ibrahim Shekarau of Kano State has challenged the INEC on the mechanisms to safeguard electoral materials, especially ballot papers that are now in the hands of polling clerks.
Action Congress of Nigeria's (ACN) National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, yesterday described the postponement of the National Assembly election as a disaster. He said the Jonathan Administration and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) have failed the country.
He said Nigeria, the acclaimed giant of Africa, could not learn instructive lessons from Ghana which successfully held general elections and transferred power without any hitch.
Tinubu who described the postponement as a shame, said the Federal Government should quit if those at the helm of affairs cannot live up to expectations of Nigerians.
The former Lagos State governor said President Goodluck Jonathan should take responsibility for the shortcomings which marred the exercise and made its postponement more compelling.
Shekarau who described the postponement as shocking and unfortunate said the sensitivity of the materials was responsible for their being kept in secured areas and strong rooms across the country.
In his reaction yesterday, he said it is incumbent on Prof. Jega to convince Nigerians what mechanism would be put in place to ensure the safety of those materials and make up for the shortfalls.
“Before the announcement of the postponement, voting had commenced in some areas. According to security reports reaching us, materials had been made available to about 80 per cent of Kano State and voting actually commenced in some polling units before the postponement.
“I think INEC has the responsibility of assuring Nigerians about the safety of the materials and how it intends to make up for the shortfall for the already used ballot papers. This is because in some areas, more than 90 per cent voters had voted, so what is INEC going to do about this as the announcement got to them late in the afternoon by the time voting had started.”
Shakarau appealed to Nigerians to be patient: “We have no alternative to INEC, we have to give them a benefit of the doubt.
Former Speaker of the House of Representatives Alh. Umar Ghali Na'aba said INEC's action was the best for the country in this circumstance.
“I pray that INEC should be able to put things right so that Monday's elections will restore confidence of Nigerians in the electoral process.
“I hope by Monday, INEC will be able to fix it properly this time around”.