… Warns LP’s Yusuf Datti Ahmed, co-anarchists against endangering civil rule
The Northern leadership of the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC), has praised the conduct of the just-concluded 2023General Elections, saying Nigeria has taken another significant step in its democratic journey.
According to an issued statement by the Forum, signed by Abubakar Dogara, “The 2023 General Elections have come and gone, and we believe that Nigeria has taken another significant step in its democratic journey”.
The Forum, however, noted with serious concern the inconsistency of some INEC staff, particularly in the declaration of election results in some States, saying, “We are worried about the actions of some INEC staff that could potentially truncate the victory of some opposition political parties, as seen in some States”. It urged the INEC and other critical stakeholders to maintain the sanctity of the electoral processes and protect its integrity.
The statement further said, “Regrettably, our Forum is seriously concerned about the ridiculous statements of the Labour Party (LP) vice-presidential candidate in the 2023 Presidential elections, Yusuf Datti Ahmed, who insisted that the President-elect and the Vice-president-elect must not be sworn-in or else democracy will come to an end on the 29th of May, 2023.
“We, of the Northern leadership of the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC), wish to dissociate ourselves from the current moves by Yusuf Datti Ahmed and his co-anarchists to endanger the civil rule. We are raising an alarm over these threats to peaceful transition of power. We are disturbed by the potential uprising against Nigeria’s Democracy. What is at play sounds familiar to every Nigerian with good memory. The unfortunate event of the 1993 will never be allowed to repeat itself by anti-democratic elements.
“We recall with trepidation the harrowing experiences of Nigerians following the manner the democratic process was truncated in 1993, when a Presidential electoral process was permanently halted and the duly elected candidate of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), Alhaji Moshood Kashimawo Abiola was prevented from assuming office.
“Therefore, we urge the relevant authorities to thoroughly investigate the likes of Yusuf Datti in order to bring them to justice. Our Forum believes that pre and post elections violence, as well as other forms of inciting statements from ugly politicians, have no place in our democratic process and must be condemned by all well-meaning Nigerians”.
The Forum further said, “We do not believe that our country, and indeed the International community, should watch as Nigeria faces yet another imminent tumult in the hands of enemies of democracy, rule of law, and decency. We have come this far in our democratic journey since civil rule was restored in 1999. We cannot afford a reversal at this stage. Nigeria as we know, may not survive the destruction these anarchists who have found themselves in the Nigerian political space by chance are calling for.
“As major stakeholders in the last elections, we affirm that the 2023 Nigerian electoral process recorded fair credibility and transparency, and we acknowledge that there are areas that require further improvements. But we also believe and understand that democracy is never a synonym for perfection, and it is not perfect anywhere in the world. We encourage the President-elect to partner with the National leadership of opposition political parties to iron out areas of concern as a prelude to an inclusive transition and government.
“However, this is without prejudice to the rights of political parties and their candidates to explore legal channels to seek redress in case of grievances, as we expect the Judiciary, which is the last resort of the common man, to not allow itself to be compromised. This is the decent and constitutional approach everywhere in the world, and ours must not be different”.
The Forum called on all Nigerians to rise against anti-democratic forces wherever they rear their heads, saying, “We must not allow anyone, no matter his grouse, to set us back or bring down our country. We must jealously guard this democracy in the interest of our nation. We equally urge elected officials to be accountable and transparent in the discharge of their duties. They must prioritize the needs of the people and work towards improving their welfare and well-being.