Why Buhari didn’t intervene in Adamawa governorship saga — FG
Written by Adeola Ibrahim on October 19, 2023
The Federal Government explained that President Buhari did not intervene in the governorship drama in Adamawa State because the matter was within the purview of the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, could handle. This was stated on Wednesday
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, stated this why fielding questions from State House correspondents at the end of the weekly Federal Executive Council, FEC, meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, at the Council Chambers, Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Mohammed maintained that the just-concluded elections in the country was the most transparent and rancour-free elections in recent times due to the introduction of the Bimodal Voters Accreditation System, BVAS.
He added that President Buhari did not use security to rig elections in favour of the ruling party.
He was then asked why Buhari has not intervened in the alleged misconduct of the Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, in charge of Adamawa State, Hudu Yunusa Ari, who usurped the powers of the Returning Officer to announce the All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship candidate, Senator Aishatu ‘Binani’ Ahmed as the governor-elect, while collations were ongoing.
Mohammed said the INEC Chairman was saddled with the responsibility of handling election matters.
According to him, “I don’t think this government has ever intervened in the way the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, conducts elections.
“So there was no need for us to intervene. It was entirely an INEC and INEC handled it.
“The Chairman of INEC is in charge of all employees of INEC and he is handling it, so what do you want the government to do?”
Reminded that INEC had written a petition to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, to take the alleged unwholesome display of the Adamawa REC to the President, he maintained that the INEC Chairman is capable of handling the matter.
He also spoke on his trip to the US and why he accused the presidential candidate of the Labour Party, Mr. Peter Obi of treason.
Lai said since Mr. Obi did not rebuke his running mate, Datti Baba-Ahmed, for saying that if the President-elect, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is sworn-in on May 29, it would be the end of democracy in the country, it meant that Ahmed said the mind of Mr. Obi.
He said, “I went to the US to balance the skewed report about the just-concluded elections.
“And everywhere I went, I said it very unambiguously that the last general elections in Nigeria are the most transparent, the freest and was authentic.
“And that’s despite the efforts of the opposition to delegitimise or discredit the elections. And I forwarded my position there as to why these elections were the best.
“One, that deployment of technology, especially BIVAS, made it pretty difficult for anybody to do the usual things before which were overvoting, stuffing ballots and the like, because once it takes your biometrics you can’t go twice.
“Secondly, I said because the President also showed that he promised that he will provide a level-playing ground, which he did.
“In the first instance, Mr President did not confer any advantage on his ruling party.
“And that is why as far he was concerned, he would rather lose the election than win at all costs and the results showed it.
“The President lost the presidential election in his state in Katsina. It has never happened in Nigeria, for a sitting President to lose the election in his own state.
“And I went further to say that the President also prevented anybody from misusing security to rig elections. Of course, the last election is largely the least violent in the history of Nigeria.
“What I said about Mr. Peter Obi is very clear. I said, Mr. Peter has every right to seek redress in court like Labout Party.
“But nobody has the right to call for insurrection, or to threaten to say that if the President-elect is sworn in, that would be the end of democracy.
“That was precisely what the running mate of Mr. Peter Obi said on television. And I have not heard Peter Obi reign him in or correcting him.
“So if your running mate says something, of course he was saying it on behalf of the party and the candidate.
“That’s why I said that it was treason for anybody to say that if a duly elected President in Nigeria is sworn in, that would be the end of democracy. So I don’t see anything controversial in that.”