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Friday, 4 January 2019

2019 Poll: PDP, Others Kick As INEC Names Buhari’s Niece Result Collation Panel Chair

The Independent National Electoral Commission on Thursday inaugurated ad hoc committees on the Electoral Logistics and the National Collation Centre.

While the ad hoc committee on the Electoral Logistics is chaired by an INEC National Commissioner, Air Vice Marshal Tijjani Mu’azu (retd.), another INEC National Commissioner, Amina Zakari, has been named the chairman of the ad hoc committee on National Collation Centre.
But the opposition political parties led by the Peoples Democratic Party have rejected the appointment of Zakari as the chairperson of the Committee on National Collation Centre, claiming that she is President Muhammadu Buhari’s niece.
Buhari is the candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress in the 2019 presidential election
But apart from Mu’azu, other members of the Adhoc Committee on Electoral Logistics are Abubakar Nahuche (National Commissioner) and Mallam Mohammed Haruna (National Commissioner).
The representatives of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Customs Service, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Federal Road Safety Corps, Nigeria Immigration Service, Nigeria Police Force, Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Department of State Services, Nigerian Army, Nigerian Navy, and Nigerian Air Force are members of the committee.
Other members of the committee are INEC Director of Electoral Operations Department; Director, Estate Works and Transport; Director, Procurement and Director of Stores (Secretary).
Apart from Zakari, other members of the ad hoc Committee on Collation Centre are Prof. Anthonia T. Okoosi-Simbine (National Commissioner); Festus Okoye (National Commissioner/Chairman of its Information and Voter Education Committee); Chief Technical Adviser to INEC Chairman, Prof. Bolade Eyinla; and Chief Press Secretary to the INEC chairman, Rotimi Oyekanmi.
Also named as members were INEC Director, International Cooperation and Protocol Department; Director, ICT Department; Director, Election and Party Monitoring Department; Director, Security Department; Director, Planning, and Monitoring Department; Director, Health Services Department and Director, INEC Secretariat (Secretary).
Yakubu said with the inauguration of the two committees, the commission was taking another step in its determination to ensure seamless preparations for the 2019 general elections.
Meanwhile, groups including the PDP and the All Progressives Grand Alliance have opposed the appointment of Zakari as the head of the committee on the presidential election coalition center.
The PDP, at a press conference in Abuja by its National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, on Thursday rejected Zakari’s appointment on the grounds that “she is President Muhammadu Buhari’s blood relation.”
Ologbondiyan said such an appointment would assist Buhari, the APC and INEC to rig the presidential election.
He also said it could fuel violence, adding that it would be injurious to Nigeria’s democracy.
The PDP spokesman stated that the PDP and its presidential candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, vehemently rejected the appointment.
He, therefore, called on the INEC chairman to rescind the appointment.
Ologbondiyan said,
“Today, we have been informed that Yakubu, apparently in furtherance of the plots to rig the presidential election, has appointed Mrs. Amina Zakari, a blood relation (niece) of the APC candidate, President Muhammadu Buhari, as the chairperson of INEC Advisory Committee and Presidential Election Collation Centre Committee.
“The PDP Presidential Campaign Organisation vehemently and unequivocally rejects, in its entirety, the appointment of Mrs Amina Zakari, President Buhari’s blood relation, as the head of the collation of results, in the same election in which his uncle, President Buhari, as a candidate, has displayed a huge desperation to win.
“The appointment of Zakari, who had been openly accused in various quarters as being the link person between INEC and the Buhari Presidency in their schemes to rig the election for President Buhari, constitutes direct violence against the presidential election and the PDP will not, in any way, whatsoever, accept it.”


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