Rivers PDP Chairman, Bro. Felix Obuah Welcomes Issuance Of Certificates Of Return To Winners of March 19, 2016 Re-run Elections By INEC
The Chairman, Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Bro Felix Obuah has lauded the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, for the issuance of Certificates of Return to PDP candidates who won in the March 19, 2016 National and State Assemblies Re-run elections in the State.
Bro. Obuah, who described the exercise as a welcome development, however, said the slight delay by the Commission to issue the certificates was regrettable, believing that whatever prompted such action was avoidable and should not be allowed to be experienced again.
The PDP Chairman explained that although the Party was not unaware of the seeming insurmountable pressure on the Commission by leaders of the All Progressives Congress not to issue the certificates to the PDP winners in the elections, even as such pressure still persists on the Commission not to release the remaining results and to reschedule the re-run for the remaining eight Local Government Areas, where elections were suspended the PDP believes that what is worth doing is worth doing well, and that INEC should act responsibly by being truly unbiased.
The PDP maintains that INEC could still regain its credibility if the Commission commits itself to doing what is right than allowing itself and its activities to be controlled by the APC-led Government at the centre, as doing this negates the very essence of the Commission’s independent status as envisaged by the law establishing it.
It is expected at all times that INEC would do the needful by releasing election results after collation, declare the winners accordingly and issue Certificates of Return to the respective successful party candidates (winners), in line with the 7 days stipulated in the Electoral Act, without any compromise or being intimidated not to do so, as obviously observed in the re-run elections in the State.
As we again commend the Commission for not heeding the demand by the All Progressives Congress to withhold both the results and the certificates, we would also appeal to all staff and officials of INEC and indeed all relevant authorities to resist aiding the grand conspiracy to truncate democratic process and peace in Rivers State.
Similarly, the Peoples Democratic Party says the continued absence of the complete statutorily required number of representatives of Rivers State at the National Assembly is not in the best interest of the people of the State.
Bro Obuah observed that this development deprived the State of full participation in discussions on the floor of the Senate and the House of Representatives regarding the passage of the 2016 Budget and amendment of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) which has been amended and now referred to as Petroleum Industry Governance Bill (PIGB).
The PDP Chairman therefore, calls on the Independent National Electoral Commission to urgently reschedule re-run Elections in the remaining LGAs and to conclude all procedures required for the return of the State representatives to both the State and National Assemblies.
The PDP also condemned the activities of former Governor Rotimi Amaechi and the All Progressives Congress for the temporal stalemate in the electoral process in Rivers State, appealing to the international community to prevail on President Buhari and the Federal Government of Nigeria to match their words with action by allowing the rule of law, free, fair and peaceful election and uninterrupted democratic process in Rivers State.
Special Adviser on Media to
State PDP Chairman, Bro. Felix Obuah
Friday, April 8, 2016