ACN Reject April 4th for National Assembly Elections…. Proposes April 9th
The Action Congress of Nigeria , (ACN) has said the party is not ready to participate in the National Assembly elections, rescheduled to Monday, April 4 th by INEC.A statement issued by Senator Lawal Shuaibu, National Secretary of ACN, and addressed to INEC chairman, reads:
'The Action Congress of Nigeria , (ACN) pursuant to our resolve as promoters of democratic norms and practices, received with shock, the news of the postponement of the National Assembly elections, after all the assurances that INEC was ready for the elections every inch of the way. We however wish to posit as follows':
'Given the huge logistical challenges as observed by every Party, we commend Prof Attahiru Jega for the courage to postpone the elections, which if allowed to continue in the circumstances would have again exposed INEC's unreadiness for the exercise effectively, added to this, his rare ability to apologise for such lapses'.
'Given the sheer lack of capacity exhibited by the Operations Directorate , we are convinced beyond any reasonable doubt that INEC cannot between now and Monday, 4th April, 2011, account for all ballot papers already utilised, retrieve all sensitive materials in circulation and in the hands of various electoral officials nationwide. Added to this, is the fact that the same Operations and IT departments have not been able to avail political parties who are critical stakeholders in this exercise, the updated register of voters',
'Taking cognisance of the fact that it is impossible for especially opposition parties to re-finance their agents sent to remote parts of the country and other logistical requirements given the extremely short time frame'.
'Bearing in mind the huge losses suffered by every sector of the national economy and especially ordinary Nigerians who eke out their living by the day, owing to the shutting down of all businesses'.
'Seeking to avoid voter fatique and allow for proper management of the elections,
The ACN condemns in strong terms the neglect and calculated attempt by the internal bureaucracy in INEC but especially the Operations Directorate in subverting the process thereby causing the nation monumental losses and undermining the integrity of the entire exercise'.
'Sir, this is our position and we believe shifting each of the elections by one week is still within the confines of the electoral act. Please accept our kind prayer for God's guidance in your responsibility'.