The United Progressive Party (UPP), has said that chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmood Yakubu has vindicated the party’s position that the November 18, 2017 Anambra State governorship election was characterised by massive vote buying.
In a statement by its national publicity secretary, Chief Ogbuehi Dike, the party fingered the alleged culprits to include All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA), All Progressives Congress (APC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who it said set up shops at virtually all the polling units to bid for and buy votes.
The party noted that the difference in votes won by these three parties was in their individual capacity to outdo one another at different places as the highest bidder always wins in such bazaar.
The party hailed Professor Yakubu for seeking Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) collaboration to address this and also monitor campaign funds.
“The unfortunate aspect of the perfidy in the Anambra governorship election is that this show of shame took place in the full glare of all the security agencies that covered the election. If this dangerous dimension to winning election is allowed to spread across the country then our democracy is doomed. The much expected 2019 general election will be a mere charade.
“As the UPP National Chairman, Chief Dr. Chekwas Okorie succinctly pointed out in a press conference on the sham called Anambra Governorship Election on 22nd November, 2017 in Abuja. ‘The implication of this unfortunate development is that politicians will consider it wasteful and unnecessary to promote their parties manifestoes and canvass their blueprints for governance during campaigns in order to sell their party and candidature to the electorate. Politicians will consider that all that they have to do is to amass wealth, set up shops at polling booths, out-bid their rivals and wait to be congratulated and celebrated for a landslide victory.”
In another development, the party said Vice President Yemi Osinbajo’s support for State Police as panacea to the perennial security challenge in the country was in tandem with its position as provided in Chapter 6 of the party’s Manifesto which states: “UPP shall promote and establish state police and community policing. UPP shall make every state citizen and member of community a stakeholder in the matter of state and community security. UPP notes that the role of state governors as the chief security officers of their states is a relatively empty formula.”
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