Since the result of the March28 presidential election was announce with President Jonathan conceding defeat to general Buhari, members of the APC have developed a new confidence that borders on harassing members of the PDP. Some members of the smaller parties have also joined in the fray and have moved allegiance to the APC. It is not clear whether their decision is based on principle or for pecuniary interest. A party leader called it enlightened self-interest. It is obvious that the Presidency is now uncomfortable with the new development and has warned against negative triumphalism that has been put on display by certain elements since march31, which flies in the face of his personal commitment to post-election peace, unity and national stability.
According to the special adviser to the President on media and publicity, Reuben Abati, ‘as the nation prepares for Saturdays’ elections, president Goodluck Jonathan calls on all Nigerians to remain peaceful, united and law abiding. The president considers the very unseemly attempt by some politicians, groups and individuals to intimidate others heat up the polity and cause public disorder and disaffection in the aftermath of the Presidential and National Assembly elections.
He also said that ‘President Jonathan also condemned the undue harassment of public official serving under his administration and urged all affected persons to continue to perform their lawful duties without fear. The president cautions that this should be a time for the healing of political wounds in the overriding interest of national unity, stability and progress and not time ethnic jingoism and the settling of scores.
The federal government will not condone any attempt to instigate a crisis in any part of the country in furtherance of personal political ambitions.
President Jonathan assures all Nigerians that his administration remains fully committed to national progress and the entrenchment of the best values of democracy for the good of all Nigerians. He urged all Nigerians to go out en masse to vote the candidate of their choice.
Some incidents have worried the presidency and these includes the provocative statement by the Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu who threatened the Igbos living in Lagos to either vote the APC candidate of his or perish in the lagoon. Some believe went overboard just to please the leadership of made him in the first place.
It remains to be seen what impact the controversy of the Oba statement will have on the fortunes of the APC at the polls. The other hot spots where members of the opposition seem to have gone overboard include Rivers and Ekiti states. In Rivers state, it has been alleged that the APC mobilised a group that call themselves a group of 16 political parties and have gone to protest in Abuja insisting that the INEC- REC be removed. The chief press secretary to the INEC chairman, Kayode Idowu have said they have no case as there have not produced any strong argument to support their case.
In Ekiti, the APC law makers pursuing impeachment against the governor and this has ground activities of the state to a halt. Observers are wondering that the law are not even campaigning for their re -election with election coming up on Saturday. Unions, residents and the traditional rulers are not happy with Ekiti APC legislator’s action and they are calling for a truce.
“IPOB is being sponsored by those I will call the Coalition of the politically disgruntled and the treasury looters. They believe that by sponsoring this group to destabilize the country and trigger chaos, they will realize their ambition of escaping justice and then be free to dip their hands into the nation’s treasury again.”
-Lai Mohammed(Nigeria’s Information Minister on IPOB)
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