Kogi/Bayelsa Elections: A Wave Of Terror Is Threatening Our Democracy – Secondus

 

Leader of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Uche Secondus, has said that the nation’s democracy is under threat, following the manner in which the November 16th elections in Kogi and Bayelsa States were conducted and the outcomes that followed. 

The National Chairman of the PDP called for the cancellation of the governorship elections in both states, insisting that the elections were marred by violence, which led to several deaths.

Mr Secondus, who addressed journalists after a meeting of the party’s board of trustees in Abuja, stated that the party has video evidence of malpractices committed during the conduct of the elections.

Below is a full speech by Mr. Secondus, on the issues stemming from the governorship polls in both Bayelsa and Kogi states.

READ ALSO: INEC Fixes Date For Supplementary And Rerun Elections For Kogi West, Ajaokuta

November 21, 2019

Text Of Press Conference by the National Chairman Of The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus, on the Position of the PDP on the Violence, Killings, Abuse of Human Rights and Rigging in the November 16th Kogi And Bayelsa Governorship Elections.

Gentlemen of the Press,

We have invited you this afternoon to alert Nigerians and the international community that all is not well with our nation. A wave of terror is threatening our democracy; our constitutional order, national cohesion and safety of our citizens are now as at stake.

As the world witnessed, the official conspiracies, bloodletting and mindless killing of innocent citizens by agents of the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led administration in connivance with the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), to aid the forceful seizure of power in the November 16th Kogi and Bayelsa State governorship elections, clearly show that our democracy is under severe attack.

In an apparent organized attack, government-controlled Police and military, working for the APC, deployed dangerous assault weapons, including helicopters to coordinate the violent invasion of polling units with maximum force; shooting, killing and maiming unarmed civilians, who were called out by government to perform their civic responsibilities at the elections.

The world watched with horror as killer security agents brutalized voters and carted away ballot boxes to government facilities were results were written in favour of the APC and handed to a heavily compromised INEC, which has become part of the crime, to announce.

From the report reaching our party, no fewer than 30 innocent compatriots were killed and many more injured in this organized crime against humanity by the APC, the Police and INEC.

The only crime of the citizens was their expressed determination to vote for the candidates of their choice as governors of Kogi and Bayelsa States as clearly manifested in the results from the polling centers before the forceful seizure of the electoral processes.

Most distressing is the gruesome incineration of one of our party’s woman leaders in Kogi State, Mrs. Acheju Abuh, in her home by APC thugs, a crime that was abetted by unscrupulous security agents.

Our party holds that this electoral fraud and crime against humanity, including established culpable homicide committed by the APC, security agents and INEC cannot be allowed to pass.

The leadership of our great party has thoroughly reviewed incontrovertible pieces of documentary of evidence including video clips, graphic pictures, witness testimonies, manipulated results sheets, proofs of compromising of INEC officials and other hard facts to establish the culpability of the Police and INEC in the electoral fraud as well as the unforgiveable culpable homicide and crime against humanity in the elections.

The PDP also restates that we have the details of the roles played by the Police high command and the INEC as well as other security and INEC officials in this election. Those details will be made public at the appropriate forum and time.

It is instructive to call the attention of Nigerians and the international community to the fact that since the election, the President Muhammadu Buhari-led APC Federal Government has failed to take any concrete steps to investigate the issues and bring culprits to book. The Police and INEC had also failed to take any decisive action to arrest and investigate their officers accused of involvement in various crimes in the elections.

We have also noted frantic efforts by the police hierarchy to explain away the crimes and sweep the killings under the carpet.

These only validate apprehension that the invasion of polling unit, killings and alteration of results were part of the premeditated power-grabbing designs of the APC.

The PDP states without equivocation that invasion of polling units and killing of voters to manipulate electoral results cannot be allowed in our democratic space. If the APC’s political brigandage that happened in Kogi and Bayelsa State is allowed to stand, such would be extended to other elections including the 2023 general elections and that would be a death knell to our democracy.

It is therefore a sacred duty we all owe our nation to pursue a redress for this crime within the ambits of our national and international laws.

In this regard, the PDP calls for the outright cancellation of the governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi States as they are products of bloodshed and do not reflect the true wishes and aspiration of the people of the states.

We also demand the immediate cancellation of the Kogi West Senatorial election. This is the biggest fraud of the century.

The PDP, standing with millions of Nigerians also holds that the INEC and the Police high command must be made answer charges of electoral fraud and crime against humanity at the appropriate quarters.

The PDP therefore calls on the international community as well as international organizations including, the United Nations (UN), the European Union (EU), Commonwealth of Nations, the African Union (AU), ECOWAS to immediately impose sanctions, including travel bans, on the INEC and the Police high commands for abusing their offices and allegedly aiding or allowing acts that led to electoral fraud and violence in the elections.

The primary duty of INEC and the Police is to ensure free, fair and credible election. This they observed in the breach as even reported by agents, voters, stakeholders and independent observers in the elections. They must therefore be made to face the consequences to serve as deterrent to others.

The leadership of the PDP once more commends the people of Kogi and Bayelsa States for their resilience and resistance against oppressive forces during the election. Such patriotism will never be in vain.

Our leadership also condoles with the families of compatriots who were murdered by the APC. Indeed, their death can never be in vain as the mandate for which they were killed will be surely retrieved.

Moreover, somebody someday will bear the full sentence of guilt at the appropriate quarters, be it within the ambit of our domestic laws or those of the international laws.

In the meantime, we urge all members of the PDP to remain strong and undeterred as we collective exert ourselves in the defence of our nation’s democracy.

Thank you and God bless.

Nigerian Army Cannot Operate Apartheid Passed Laws – The Week In Quotes

 

Here is what was said and who said what in the public sphere within the course of the passing week. 

1. “Nigerian Army cannot operate apartheid passed laws in Nigeria”

Mr Femi Falana, a Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), kicks against the proposed Operation Positive Identification (OPI).

2. “It does appear to me that government doesn’t seem to know what to do when it comes to doing what is supposed to be done”

A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Jibrin Okutepa, faults the planned introduction of Operation Positive Identification across the country.

3. “Nigerians voted PDP, APC knows they were rejected”

The National Chairman of the main opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Prince Uche Secondus reacts to the Supreme Court’s verdict, he salutes Nigerians of all divide for their commitment and support to the party and to democracy.

4. “I fought a good fight for the Nigerian people”

The presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar says he will not relent for Nigeria and democracy regardless his defeat at the Supreme Court, in his case against President Muhammadu Buhari.

5. ” Supreme Court verdict is victory for democracy”

The Speaker of the House of the Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila describes the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari at the Supreme Court as a victory for democracy.

6. “I think Nigerians have voted, the Supreme Court has upheld the outcome, it’s time to support and close ranks and queue behind President Muhammdu Buhari.”

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC) calls on Nigerians to close ranks and support President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration following the Supreme Court’s affirmation of his election victory.

7. “It is time the country is afforded the right to move on”

President Muhammadu Buhari has said that the ruling of the Supreme Court, dismissing the appeal brought before them by Atiku Abubakar and his party, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has afforded the country the ‘right to move on’.

8. “Nigeria has a lot to learn from Egypt in the fight against terrorism”

President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, calls for more engagement between Nigeria’s National Assembly and the Egyptian parliament, with a view to sharing ideas that will address the challenges common to the two countries.

9. “Join us in calling the world to take action against Boko Haram”

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, SAN says concerted action by countries around the world is crucial towards tackling terrorism in the Sahel region, as well as the challenges posed by Boko Haram and ISWAP in Africa.

10. “I am very proud of you”

President Muhammadu Buhari congratulates the Golden Eaglets of Nigeria for a fantastic beginning in the group opening match of FIFA World Cup Brazil 2019.

PHOTOS: Oshiomhole, Secondus Embrace Each Other At Presidential Election Tribunal

Adams Oshiomhole and Uche Secondus Embrace Each Other

 

The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Adams Oshiomhole and the National Chairman of the opposing Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus, embraced each other at the court room of the Presidential Election Petitions Tribunal in Abuja.

The presidential tribunal will today deliver judgement in the petition brought by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, challenging the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari in the February 23 Presidential election.

READ ALSO: Tribunal Rules On Atiku’s Petition Challenging Buhari’s Victory

See Photos Below: 

Ninth Assembly: Full Blown Dictatorship Is Brewing – Secondus

Withdraw From Presidential Election Tribunal, PDP Tells Justice Bulkachuwa
A file photo of PDP National Chairman, Mr Uche Secondus

 

The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, Prince Uche Secondus has warned President Muhammadu Buhari and the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), against muzzling the legislature and the other arms of the government.

Prince Secondus speaking against the backdrop of the obvious direct involvement of the President and his party in Tuesday’s election of principal officers of the 9th Assembly said that the doctrine of the separation of power must be respected and guided to avoid dictatorship.

The National Chairman, speaking ahead of the inauguration of the 9th Assembly said in a statement from his media office signed by Ike Abonyi, that his warning has become absolutely germane given the dictatorial tendencies of the APC administration as seen in the last four years, and their continuous propensity to disregard the rule of law and other principles of democracy.

According to the PDP boss, available intelligence to the party shows that the Presidency and the APC have concluded plans to use intimidation and coercion against legislators not ready to do their bidding in their desperation to hoist leadership on the legislators.

READ ALSO: Democracy Day: Buhari Signs June 12 Bill Into Law

Prince Secondus revealed that the Presidency and the APC have been arm-twisting the technocrat officials of the National Assembly to fashion out favourable rules that would enable them to have their way.

He said that the apparent disregard to the basic principles of separation of power by this regime points clearly to their eventual destination which is a dictatorship.

The National Chairman said that the executive is trying to take over the 9th Assembly so as to realize their long-held aspiration of hijacking the legislature which began in August last year during the state-sponsored stealing of the Senate mace and the aborted illegal seizure of the 8th Assembly.

“Indications are clearly showing that full-blown dictatorship is brewing in our country

“When a supposed democratic government brazenly muscles all the other arms of government, the legislature, the Judiciary, and even the press, the fourth estate of the realm, we should be worried at what is loading in our polity.

Prince Secondus said that any government not disposed to respecting the separation of power and rule of law as enshrined in our constitution in a democratic setting is looking for absolute authority which is nothing but totalitarianism.

Finally, the National Chairman admonished the legislators of the 9th Assembly Guidry their independence jealously and refuse to be intimidated knowing that as elected representatives of the people, that they the parliament are the opium of democracy.

Supplementary Elections: Secondus Charges Military To Be Professional

A file photo of Mr Uche Secondus

 

National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus has called on the military to resist any attempt at being dragged into election manipulation towards the supplementary elections on March 23.

Secondus made the call after an emergency meeting of its National Executive Committee (NEC) in Abuja on Wednesday.

He urged the military to uphold the institution and guide their names jealously.
According to a statement from his media office, the National Chairman termed the ‘inconclusive’ terminology as a rigging strategy for the opposition party.

READ ALSO: PDP, Wike Call For Conclusion Of Elections In Rivers And Bauchi

PDPs vice Presidential candidate at the presidential elections, Peter Obi in his own remark, said that “the worst form of corruption is election rigging because the process of coming into power is far more important than what is done thereafter.”

The Senate President Bukola Saraki and the Speaker House Representatives Hon. Dogora all urged members of the party to remain steadfast and not despair as their victory must be restored at the court.

The meeting had in attendance, Bukola Saraki, Yakubu Dogara and other party stalwarts in attendance.

Supplementary Elections: PDP Holds Emergency NEC Meeting

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has commenced an emergency meeting of its National Executive Committee (NEC).

The meeting holding at WADATA plaza in Abuja, began with party chairman Uche Secondus, Senate President Bukola Saraki, Speaker House of Reps Yakubu Dogara and other party stalwarts in attendance.

On the agenda is the supplementary elections slated for Saturday.

READ ALSO: PDP, Wike Call For Conclusion Of Elections In Rivers And Bauchi

The party chairman accused the INEC Chairman and security agencies of being tools of the APC to “suppress the will of the people”.

He also noted that the concept of inconclusive elections is a term coined by INEC and the APC to stop PDP from winning elections.

Secondus also accused the INEC Chairman of delaying the democratic process and overheating the polity.

We Won’t Depend On Threatened Observers, We Will Go To Court, Says Secondus

A file photo of Mr Uche Secondus

 

The chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Uche Secondus, said on Friday that the endorsement of President Buhari’s second tenure by foreign countries is out fear of being killed as inferred by a statement credited to the Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai.

Mr. Secondus made this allegation during a press conference in Abuja, where he claimed that the elections of Saturday, February 23, 2019, which he described as a sham, was a Nigerian problem which must be resolved by Nigerians.

He noted that the opposition PDP will go to court to get redress.

READ ALSO: Peace Committee Meets With Buhari, Conveys PDP’s Concerns

“We will go to court, there is nobody that will stop us from going to court.”

“We are not going to depend on the comments of observers that were threatened… they were threatened and silenced, they cannot talk; so it is our responsibility as good citizens to bring this to the public, and to the Nigerian people and to go to court, so we are going to court.”

On INEC’s decision to hold supplementary elections on March 9, alongside the Governorship and State Assembly elections, the PDP chairman said the situation would be assessed and a decision communicated soon.

PDP Alleges Manipulation Of Presidential Results By APC

A file photo of Mr Uche Secondus

 

The opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has rejected results of the Presidential Elections from Nasarawa State, saying the ruling All Progressives Congress is manipulating the results of the Presidential election.

During a press briefing in Abuja, the party’s National Chairman, Uche Secondus, insisted that the results were manipulated between ward collation centres and the collation centre in Abuja.

“Firstly, I want to categorically state that our collation centers have all original results from every polling unit, in every ward, in every Local Government Area (LGA) in Nigeria, of which the international community is well aware, implying all results currently being announced by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is incorrect thus unacceptable to our party and people,” he said.

According to the Presidential Election Returning Officer for Nasarawa State, Azubuike Nwankwo, Muhammadu Buhari of the All Progressives Congress (APC) polled 289, 903 votes to defeat the candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar, who garnered 283,847 votes.

LIVE: COLLATION OF PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION RESULTS

But the PDP has accused both the government of President Muhammadu Buhari and the All Progressive Congress (APC), of working with INEC officers, to allegedly manipulate the “figures for results already announced at polling units nationwide, in Local Government Areas (LGAs) where our party, the PDP, had commanding votes; this must now be resisted by every well-meaning Nigerian.”

He alleged that “With the INEC IT server hacked by agents of the APC to manipulate results, we can with certainty state that results from the following polling units have, for example, been tampered with, note: Sarkin Dawaki ward in Doma LGA, Nassarawa state; Doka ward in Doma LGA – Nassarawa state; Agyaragin – Tofa ward.” The PDP chairman added that 10,000 illegal votes were “added to already announced results in Wurno LGA in Sokoto state”.

The PDP further accused the APC of using the instruments of state power, including the military, police, and DSS to muzzle the opposition and influence the outcome of the election. According to the PDP, this is against the spirit of the “Peace Accord, which called for impartiality and non-partisanship by members of our security organization with constitutional roles to play during this civic exercise.”

That also alleged that the APC had sent high-ranking government officials to different geo-political zones of the country to Mr. Secondus, however, insisted that the PDP was coasting to victory and asked INEC to be impartial “and not become willing agents to disenfranchise our people and derail our democracy, because the world is watching, and history will indeed pass judgment.”

PDP Demands Unconditional Release Of Buba Galadima

A file photo of Mr Uche SecondusPDP

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has called for the immediate release of the spokesperson of the party’s presidential campaign council, Buba Galadima, by the Department of State Security.

In a statement issued on Sunday, the party’s Chairman, Uche Secondus, condemned the arrest, while describing Galadima as a patriot whose patriotic deeds “have strongly been highlighted by various Nigerians, including President Muhammadu Buhari”.

“What crime has he committed? I answer my own question and say none. Mr Galadima is constitutionally guaranteed a right of freedom of speech and freedom after the speech,” Secondus said.

He further stated that while the nation is currently boiling with the deaths caused by thugs during Saturday’s elections, none of those responsible for the violence has been arrested by the security operatives, “yet a patriot and pro-democracy activist is arrested”.

Read Also: DSS Denies Reported Arrest Of Buba Galadima

The PDP insists that though the arrest is the latest in a pattern of anti-democratic actions by the government, it will not be intimidated.

In an earlier statement, the party’s spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan, alleged that Galadima had been whisked away by masked security operatives on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the DSS has denied the reports.

‘You Are Not God’, Secondus Tells Buhari

 

The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Uche Secondus, has again condemned the President for ordering security agents to deal with ballot snatchers ruthlessly during the general elections.

President Muhammadu Buhari had admitted at the APC Caucus meeting on Monday that he had ordered security operatives to “deal ruthlessly” with anyone who attempts to snatch ballot box during the rescheduled general elections next Saturday, February 23, 2019.

READ ALSOBuhari Orders Security Agencies ‘To Be Ruthless’ With Ballot Box Snatchers

During the meeting of the PDP National Executive Committee on Tuesday, the Mr Secondus questioned the statement by the President, demanding to know why he wanted the lives of Nigerians put on the line because of the elections.

He said, “Why do you want to kill your countrymen and women for the sake of elections, that you must be a President?

 

“You know you are not God. Buhari, I am addressing you, you know you are not God and I am convinced that God is going to unseat you because all your actions in the last three years are against the people of Nigeria.

”Mr Secondus also accused the President of what he described as insensitivity towards the killing of Nigerians in the North East.

“Hunger, killings unemployment, you are not sensitive to it, when they kill in Plateau, you can’t make such a profound statement but when it concerns you, you want people to die so that you can be President? he asked.

The PDP chairman further accused the President of APC’s division in Imo and Ogun states.

“Even in your party, you divided your party in Imo, you divided your party in Ogun State just for you to be a President? and that’s how you have divided the nation”, Secondus added.

The PDP chairman called on leaders and members of the PDP to keep to the rules of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and not get involved in ballot snatching or any altercation with the military

PDP Condemns Postponement Of Elections, Asks INEC Chairman To Resign

 

The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Prince Uche Secondus has said that the ‘shoddy’ arrangements for this election by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, is a deliberate predetermined agenda of President Muhammadu Buhari to cling on to power.

Prince Secondus said that the postponement which is part of a grand design by the All Progressives Congress, APC, to thwart the will of Nigerians at all cost, clearly exposes INEC as a failure and calls on the Chairman of the Commission, Prof Mahmood Yakubu to resign immediately.

The PDP leader warned that the party will not accept anything short of a well organized electoral process devoid of manipulation, harassment and intimidation of voters and the opposition particularly members of the PDP.

According to the party stalwart, postponing the elections is a plot by the ruling party to cling to power.

“Having failed in all their nefarious options to enable them to cling on to power, the APC and the INEC came up with the idea of shifting election an action that is dangerous to our democracy and unacceptable”.

The National Chairman said that the APC in connivance with the INEC have been trying all options including but not limited to burning down INEC offices in some states and destroying of electoral materials to create artificial problems upon which to stand for their dubious act.

READ ALSO: APC Condemns Postponement Of Elections, Asks INEC To Be Neutral

According to a statement from the National Chairman’s media office signed by Ike Abonyi, Prince Secondus said that the party is privy to all the pressures from the APC and the federal government to “arm-twist the INEC, to dance to their new strategy after their earlier ones failed”.

“With several of their rigging options failing, they have to force INEC to agree to a shift in the election or a staggered election with flimsy excuses pre-manufactured for the purpose.

“For the avoidance of doubt the PDP sees this action as wicked and we are also aware of other dubious designs like the deployment of hooded security operatives who would be ruthless on the people ostensibly to scare them away,” Secondus said.

He said that by the action of the President he has further demonstrated his insensitivity costing the huge cost after Nigerians including those who came home from abroad have all mobilized to their various constituencies.

Secondus recalled that the PDP had earlier alerted Nigerians that the APC was coming up with lined up rigging strategies including burning down of INEC offices and engineering crisis in PDP stronghold areas to scare away the people.

The PDP National Chairman also drew the attention of all lovers of democracy to the statement of President Buhari on the international media that nobody can unseat him from office, the party alleged that the President’s statement is as an indication of what he wants to do.

Sultan of Sokoto Calls On Politicians To Address Insecurity, Poverty

 

The Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar has charged politicians to confront and address issues of insecurity, poverty and unemployment troubling the country.

Sultan Abubakar made the call on Monday when he received in audience the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Atiku Abubakar and leaders of the party who were at his palace for a courtesy visit.

READ ALSO: Ohanaeze’s Endorsement, Others Show There Is Hope For Nigeria – Atiku

In his remarks, the Sultan urged politicians to commit themselves to a peaceful election and also keep to their campaign promises when they get elected into their respective offices.

He also encouraged security agencies to ensure they play a non-partisan role in the coming elections.