By Dirisu Yakubu – Abuja
The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has called on Professor Mahmood Yakubu to see his reappointment as chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as ample opportunity to deliver credible and conclusive elections to Nigerians.
This is as the party further charged Professor Yakubu to use his fresh tenure to address the challenges “that characterised the first five years,” as the nation’s electoral umpire in the interest of the nation’s democracy.
Yakubu, Tuesday, got a fresh mandate to superintend the nation’s electoral system; a development that has elicited reactions from Nigerians across all walks of life.
In a statement signed by PDP spokesman, Kola Ologbondiyan, the party urged the Professor of History and International Relations to use the experience garnered in the past five years as a guide for the assignment ahead.
The statement read: “The party states that this re-appointment entrusts on Prof. Yakubu the fate, hope and future of over 200 million Nigerians as well as that of generations yet unborn.
“In the light of this five-year extension, our party hopes that the failures, disappointments and miscarriages that characterized the first five years tenure of Yakubu will have no place in the new order.
“It is, therefore, instructive to state that with his re-appointment, Prof. Yakubu has been given an ample time and opportunity to redeem himself, the image of the commission and preparation for credible, free and fair elections in our country.
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“At least, with this reappointment whatever happens in our future elections cannot be ascribed to inexperience and lack of adequate preparedness on the side of INEC.
“Furthermore, we consider this reappointment by President Buhari as an impetus to demonstrate readiness for a free fair and credible election, which Mr President had always promised to bequeath at the end of his second and final term in office in 2023.
“We, therefore, charge the INEC chairman to spend the nearly two years ahead of the next general election to rejig the commission, work out appropriate electoral policies and guidelines and push for the amendment of the Electoral Act, in conjunction with the National Assembly, to give our nation a credible electoral process.
“Prof. Yakubu must be mindful of the aphorism that ‘to whom much is given, much more is expected.’
“His reappointment, therefore, comes with a lot of expectations by Nigerians. He must quickly take a painstaking look into issues that aid manipulations, rigging, violence and inconclusive elections which marred most of the exercises conducted in his previous tenure.
“Prof. Yakubu should note that the future, stability and corporate existence of our nation have been entrusted in his hands as credible election is the bedrock of any democratic society.”
The party further called on the National Assembly, particularly, the Senate, “to focus on these pertinent issues in the course of screening Prof. Yakubu to ensure that the failures of the past is not given accommodation in the new era.”
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