Politics

Atiku Group warns APC against crippling Nigeria’s democracy

All Progressives Congress (APC) Nigeria

A political group loyal to former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, Atiku Support Organisation (ASO) has warned the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) as well as National Assembly leaders not to destroy Nigeria’s hard-fought democracy.

The group said this on Saturday in a statement signed by its national publicity secretary, Dr El Mo Victor, a copy of which was sent to newsmen.

The group asked Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, and Speaker of House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, to pass the amended Electoral Act into law without further delay.

The statement was titled, ‘Do Not Cripple and Sabotage Hard-fought Democracy in Nigeria. Pass the Amended Electoral Act to Strengthen It, and Respect the People’s Rights, Atiku Support Organisation Charges @OfficialAPCNg, @DrAhmadLawan, and @Femgbaja led @NGRSenate.’

It reads: “It’s crystal clear to all observers of the political events in Nigeria that what the APC-led Senate and the executive fear most is a new electoral act that will return to the people, the power of the ballot to decide their future leaders.

“Following calamitous performance from 2015 to date and realising that Nigerians are ready to punch them in the nose in future elections, the APC and its leadership in the house are deliberately frustrating efforts to get the amended electoral act passed into law.”

The Atiku group alleged that by refusing to sign the amended Electoral Act into law, the APC-led government was planning to rig future elections.

It said, “It’s obvious that the APC and @DrAhmadLawan-led Senate Caucus and the executives have set in motion mechanisms to rig future elections in Nigeria, the only reason they are scared of electoral reform.

“Therefore, we demand the immediate passage of the amended electoral act by @DrAhmadLawan and @Femgbaja-led Assembly to strengthen democracy in Nigeria and return the power of the ballots to the people of Nigeria.

“We call on the international community, @EUinNigeria, @USinNigeria, the US Ambassador, Mary Beth Leonard, and UK @CatrionaLaing1 and all Civil Society Organisations to call the house leadership to order. Nigeria cannot afford another bloodbath during elections.”

The group added, “We wish to also call on the APC and Buhari-led government to desist from crippling and sabotaging democracy in Nigeria for selfish reasons.

“Democracy entails freedom that must be respected and protected by the government and not stifled. The civic space must remain wide open for people to freely express themselves.

“Government should leverage these expressions and opposing views to improve governance and not gagging opposing voices.”

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