The fight for the Presidential election of 2019 is still not over as the opposition candidate Atiku Abubakar took grievances to court. While this is normal for most elections in Nigeria, this particular and the case of the opposition PDP seems to leave many well-meaning and thinking Nigerians in bewilderment as they plead their case. What is their case?
Atiku Abubakar has made a plea that based on an INEC server, he won the incumbent in the Presidential elections with a margin of 1.6 million votes. Let’s leave the numbers but the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) insists that the announced result is the wish and will and real numbers as decided by Nigerians. From saying that INEC has a server to be inspected to INEC tampering with the server results, the Atiku campaign organization and the PDP has continued to make allegations that really should not be heard in the first place and I will tell you why.
During the run-up to the 2019 elections, there was a push and pull factor between the Saraki-led Senate and the Executive concerning the amendment of the Electoral law. That bill alone nearly shut down the country with the drama Nigerians were served on a weekly basis. While the Executive was stalling on the signing of the bill for reasons best known to them, the truth remains that the bill was never signed. The old law or the one that applied in 2015 approved the use of card readers or what is called electronic voting. This can mean that INEC will have an electronic record or a server where the record of the voters with the Permanent Voters Card (PVC) are stored.
The addendum to the Amendment that is due to take effect in 2023 if it is signed in within the next four years is the issue of transmission of results. This has been the argument of Atiku and his team of lawyers and to think that this their line of argument is stunning to the say the least. The law does not make provision for the transmission of results why then is Atiku Abubakar and his team legal experts making it the basis of contesting an election that has been won and lost.
There is something Atiku and his INEC server enthusiasts are not telling Nigerians based on all their plans that were hatched from Dubai to Trump hotel and to the office of Ballard partners in the United States. As much as they don’t have a case to present to the judges in this tribunal, we need to probe more on how they were able to manufacture numbers, develop figures parallel to what INEC announced and declared all the winners in the election.
PDP and the addicts to INEC server and those hoping that Atiku is coming should tell us why they have only the results of the Presidential elections and that of APC and PDP? On the other hand, Nigerian monitored the results from all polling units across the country till it got to the National Headquarters in Abuja where the announcements where made. Were there any discrepancies in the results announced in the States, LGAs, wards and polling units and the ones announced by INEC? We all followed it on social media and how the Returning Officers had to travel to present results to the National Headquarters.
Nigerians have gone to an election and moved on with the outcome, yet the PDP is hoping that by conjectures, guesswork and being addicted to a non-existent INEC server used for an imaginary transmission that they can get back to power. Ben Bruce should actually come and help us here because this largely is commonsense and the ex-Senator has reduced tweets or statements about this election or Atiku is coming or INEC server because he knows that this too is commonsense. We understand that Atiku is dazed with the reality that his time is up and he will retire with his honours as Vice-President but Nigeria also needs to move on as there are young people to groom in leading Nigeria. He needs to move on too.
To the younger generation on both side of the divide, we need to wake up to the reality that one generation is fading away. There is a shift of power to our generation and rather than banter words on behalf of the old, we need to form our alliances. We need to start having conversations about more than what the old started and have failed on various fronts. More importantly, this generation needs to develop ways to run a campaign that can connect to present-day Nigerians poor and rich, young and old and how to win elections too.