By Godwin Etakibuebu.
THIS year’s basic elections will have as the very first baptism of fire the Presidential and National Assembly elections slated for February 16,2019 The 2nd layer of that baptismal will be the Governorship, State Homes of Assembly and Federal Capital Area, FCT Location Council elections which hang on March 2,2019
These are less than 40 days from today. Forty days for Nigerians to yell Hosanna or 40 days for us to get here the political fight ground of Armageddon?
The entire nation remains in a craze, certainly a stress and anxiety about the future on account of what might take place throughout and after the elections. There are real factors for all patriots to stay on edge about the upcoming elections. For some, there are more sounds of drums of war being become aware of the elections than sweet-sounding noise of events.
For others, they are seeing re-emergence of politics of “do or pass away” as propagated by a previous president and a late “Fort Leader” in Ibadan politics.
And yet, there are some that think the resurrection of the National Celebration of Nigeria, NPN, kind of “landslide and moon-slide” success of 1983, which precipated the eclipse and death of the 2nd Republic when a particular Major-General Muhammadu Buhari and his guys struck and took apart every democratic structure.
Everybody has his/her worry aspect about this coming election. I have mine likewise. For sake of clearness, I will take obligation by categorising the 3 worry aspects efficient in weakening the freeness and fairness of the elections: trading of votes, under-aged citizens and immigrants’ involvement in the ballot procedure. Allow me to elaborate on them quickly.
Trading of votes:.
The Punch of December 28, 2018, priced estimate the Oyo State Homeowner Commissioner for the Independent National Electoral Commission, Mutui Olaleke Agboke, as informing the nation on how political leaders have actually approached him with the sole goal of purchasing the uncollected long-term citizens cards, PVCs, in the state, which he stated were 914,529
” They are trying to find PVCs to purchase. They are trying to find what is not offered due to the fact that they understand that these things are not offered. This is the security report at my disposal. Inform those who are trying to find PVCs to purchase that there is none to purchase in Oyo State. I can ensure you that no INEC worker will offer PVCs to any political leader. I can ensure you that the procedure will be totally free and reasonable in Oyo State.
” Those who are trying to find PVCs to purchase, l will not offer you their names. I do not have their names. That is the security report l got and the report did not define the celebration and the people … included. They desire us to provide PVCs however we can’t offer to them. They wish to purchase PVCs however there is none to offer in Oyo State,” Mutui Olaleke Agboke was priced estimate as stating.
What Mutui Olaleke Agboke told was not restricted to Oyo State however is taking place all over the nation. Every state, consisting of the Federal Capital Area of Abuja, has its own leftover of uncollected PVCs. It can just be safe to come to the conclusion, in the light of Agboke’s discovery, that the marketplace location of selling and purchasing votes, which is black market obviously, is growing with patronage. This is the very first proof that the video game of selling and purchasing of votes; which is a typical hallmark of our political leaders throughout board, obviously, stands to mar the elections.
In my weekly evaluation of topical concerns at the Lagos Talk 91.3 FM (a program that l host from 9: 30-11 am every Monday) of Monday December 31, 2018, I made vibrant to concur with the Oyo State REC that selling and purchasing of vote is an issue that might jeopardise totally free and reasonable election in Nigeria, by accentuating what occurred in the governorship election that occurred in Osun State most just recently. INEC stated the election undetermined after the preliminary of ballot and a date was repaired for a rerun in couple of locations. This stated rerun made the 2 most competing political celebrations (the PDP and APC) to release strongly into the “market location of choosing votes.”.
Both political celebrations consulted with Senator Iyiola Omisore in Ile-Ife to get for the votes of his fans in the Social Democratic Celebration, understanding that whichever celebration got those votes would win the election. Omisore picked behalf of his individuals and the result of that settlement for vote event is now history. Suffice to state, in my honest judgement, that both celebrations went to work out for vote– it is as basic as selling and purchasing of votes. Let us take this as the 2nd proof that selling and purchasing of votes might torpedo the upcoming elections.
Etakibuebu, an experienced reporter, composed from Lagos. Twitter: @godwin_buebu.