Politics

“Adamawa REC playing script of INEC Chairman” — Atiku’s camp alleges

The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) presidential candidate in the 2023 election, Atiku Abubakar’s camp, has accused the Adamawa Resident Electoral Commission (REC), Hudu Yunusa-Ari, of taking cues from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

POLITICS NIGERIA reports that Atiku’s Special Assistant on Public Communication, Phrank Shaibu, stated that the electoral misconduct committed by Yunusa-Ari was similar to what INEC Chairman Mahmood Yakubu did during the Presidential poll.

Yunusa-Ari had declared All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship candidate, Senator Aishatu Ahmed Binani, the winner of the election on Sunday, even as the results were still being collated.

The announcement of the results has since been postponed indefinitely, and Yunusa-Ari has been suspended by the commission’s headquarters.

In response to these developments, Shaibu pointed out that the national leadership of INEC could not claim ignorance of the allegations against the Adamawa REC. He added that suspending Yunusa-Ari without arrest and prosecution was just a slap on the wrist.

He said: “It is crystal clear even to the blind that the Adamawa REC learnt well from the INEC Chairman. INEC as an organization, from the top to the bottom is akin to Ali Baba and the 40 thieves. As a matter of fact, the baby goat learns to eat grass by diligently watching the mama devour the lush grass around them.

“Over a month ago, Sahara Reporters published an audio clip where the Adamawa REC was heard directing an election official, Hammajam Mohammed, to rig the governorship election in favour of Binani.

“In the leaked audio, Yunusa told Mohammed to do everything humanly possible to make Binani win. He told the electoral official that he was instructed by a higher authority to make Binani win. Governor Ahmadu Fintiri complained severally about the compromised REC but INEC did nothing about it.

“Despite having over one month to prepare for this supplementary poll, INEC retained this compromised REC who went ahead to undermine the election once more. From all that has happened, it is obvious that Yunusa-Ari was acting on orders from above and that is why Governor Ahmadu Fintiri’s warnings were ignored.

“This carefully orchestrated action is a reflection of the electoral heist of February 25, 2023 when the INEC Chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, decided to announce Bola Tinubu of the APC as winner despite the many irregularities and complaints from several opposition parties. Indeed, Yunusa-Ari acted like his father and boss, Mahmood Yakubu.”

According to Atiku’s aide, the Adamawa debacle was not surprising since INEC had always favoured Binani. Shaibu revealed that INEC had even admitted to awarding a contract to one of her companies.

He added, “INEC had in a statement by National Commissioner, Festus Okoye, admitted to awarding a sensitive contract to the Binani Printing Press Limited, a firm owned by the APC governorship candidate.

“In the statement, Okoye had claimed that the company was awarded the contract as a way of stimulating the economy and encouraging Nigerian enterprise. It is obvious that Binani and INEC are in bed together.”

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