Benue State Government has accused the All Progressives Congress, APC, of planning to rig the March 9, 2019 Governorship and State Assembly elections.
Terver Akase, Governor Samuel Ortom’s Chief Secretary, raised the alarm on Sunday.
He said credible information indicated that Senator George Akume, leader of APC in Benue, told his supporters during an exclusive meeting that he had requested for military personnel from the Buhari led Federal Government.
Akase, in a statement, noted that part of the plot was to use the military to disrupt the elections and chase away voters in areas considered to be strongholds of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.
It reads: “Senator Akume boasted during the meeting that there will be no voting in Benue State on March 9 as the APC rigging machinery will ensure that the party gets massive illegal votes allotted to it.
“He has repeatedly stated that the party will not allow free and fair elections in Benue State. Akume anchors his ‘confidence’ on what he and his supporters call “federal might”. They believe that the APC-controlled Federal Government will send security operatives to help them subvert the electoral process to favour their party.
“The embattled Senator says his party has concluded plans to carry out massive thumb printing of ballot papers and altering of results for APC candidates in Benue State, and if PDP feels aggrieved, the party should go to court.
“A few days ago, the defeated Senator led APC youths on a rampage within Makurdi and caused the destruction of PDP campaign billboards and posters. The illegal outing also disrupted traffic within the State capital for many hours.
“While he was at it, Akume granted an interview to Channels Television in which he boasted again that his party will use security men in addition to hired thugs to rig the March 9 polls. He made it clear that they will use violence to intimidate people during the elections to have their way.
“We urge the Federal Government to remember that Benue is part of the federation called Nigeria, and the people of the State deserve to be given equal protection to vote candidates of their choice in a peaceful atmosphere not a militarized one, as the APC is planning to do.
“We urge the Presidency to resist the temptation to send soldiers to Senator George Akume to enable APC rig elections in Benue State. Such a decision will not only be anti-democratic but also unconstitutional.
“The Nigerian military has no role in casting or counting of votes; therefore, any attempt to use them to manipulate the coming Governorship and State Assembly elections in favour of APC in Benue State will be resisted.”