The National Chairman of the All Progressives Congress, Adams Oshiomhole, has condemned the postponement of the general elections by the Independent National Electoral Commission.
Oshiomhole, who spoke in Iyamoh, in the Etsako West Local Government Area of Edo State, on Saturday, however, said that the APC did not have prior information that the elections would not hold as earlier scheduled.
“I am disappointed, disgusted and I think my party members are totally frustrated because nobody has any clue that this election will not be able to go on, ” he said.
The former Edo governor also explained that the postponement was a huge cost to his party and other parties who had mobilised their members and supporters to various parts of the country in other to vote.
According to him, “We have spent a couple of days mobilising our party agents, supervisors and everybody that is expected to vote at various polling booths to make sure they get (there) on time to carry out their function.
“Now, to wake up that the elections have been postponed not by one day, not by two days but by one week, that, for me, is absolutely unacceptable.
“INEC has repeatedly reassured Nigerians that they were ready. Now, if, for any reason, they were not ready, the most responsible thing they need to have done is to call the political parties together at the even, not in the morning of the election.
“INEC can’t say that they don’t have their things ready until the last minute and what this has cost us as a party is huge. It also demoralises our members, not just our members but also our supporters – people who have made up their mind that they are going to vote and put all this whole tension behind us.”
Oshiomhole further advised against politicising the postponement as the elections were about the Nigerian people.
He also urged Nigerians not to be discouraged by the shift but to come out and vote on the rescheduled dates.
He said, “INEC is responsible for the conduct of elections and I am not going to sit down here and say it is PDP’s strategy to rig the election or the PDP saying it is the APC’s strategy to rig the elections,.
“No. I think on occasions like this, we should be in unity and we should condemn in strong terms possible this rude shock INEC has subjected Nigerians to.
“This is not about the political parties. It is about the Nigerian people.”
The former governor added, “I am here in my village. The President is in his home town in Daura (Katsina State). Everybody I called is in his village just to comply with the INEC guidelines.
“And this is INEC that is unyielding when they criticise us that we didn’t conclude our primaries within the guidelines, not the law, but within their own guidelines. And here they are; they cannot keep to their own guidelines.”