By Ikechukwu Okaforadi
The Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC) has warned against severe consequences over any plot by those it described as non democratic elements to subvert the popular will of the people of Delta State in the Local government election recently conducted in the state.
In a statement issued yesterday by the national chairman of IPAC, Leonard Nzenwa, IPAC condemned the attempt by the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission (DSIEC) to subvert the will of the people of Umutu Ward 17 in Ukwuani Local Government of Delta State where a keenly contested election was allegedly confirmed to have been won by the councillorship candidate of the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP), Enudu Eugene Chukwuka.
IPAC said “While one of the core mandates of the Inter-Party Advisory Council is to deepen our nascent democracy, the current leadership will not in anyway sacrifice the legitimate mandate of lawful candidates irrespective of their political party on the altar of political correctness as any attempt to suppress the collective will of Nigerian voters at all levels will be heavily resisted.
“The Delta State Independent Electoral Commission (DSIEC) is implored to resist the temptation of being hijacked by desperate failed political actors and immediately announce the winner of the election as anything contrary may have dire consequences.
“We call on civil society organizations and other critical stakeholders to intervene through aggressive advocacy so as to salvage the planned pilfering of an electoral mandate and also to ensure that this case in view serves as a deterrent to other State Independent Electoral Commissions with the penchant for organising charades in the name elections.
“The Delta State chapter of the Inter-Party Advisory Council is by the aforementioned call directed to take all necessary actions within the ambits of the law to defend our democracy and ensure that the plan to subvert the will of the people is halted.”
Furthermore, IPAC said the ongoing electoral amendment should empower INEC in place of SIECs to conduct all local government elections in the country, while simultaneously adopting an electronic voting system so that the sanctity of the ballot box and the electoral process can be guaranteed.
The Council therefore appealed to all aggrieved voters in Ukwuani Local Government of Delta State to eschew violence, but stand unapologetically by their mandate through peaceful means, while calling on the law enforcement agencies to maintain neutrality and peace.