Plans by President Goodluck Jonathan and his team to scuttle the general elections scheduled for February have come to light, with National Security Adviser Sambo Dasuki openly calling for postponement of the elections.
Sambo spoke at a Chattam House lecture in London, offering the excuse that the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has not distributed Permanent Voters Cards across the country as was expected.
SaharaReporters had reported several months ago that President Goodluck Jonathan was reluctant to hold national elections because his popularity had dwindled considerably and he feared losing the election.
In the last few days, as the popularity of General Muhammadu Buhari for the presidency has grown, Mr. Jonathan has spent vast sums of money mobilizing people to call for the postponement of the elections.
INEC spokesperson, Kayode Idowu told SaharaReporters today that INEC was not aware of Col. Dasuki’s suggestion, and that the elections will hold as scheduled.
Several sources connected to the presidency told SaharaReporters that President Jonathan wants the elections to be postponed for at least six months, a period that will enable him to appoint a new INEC chairman of his liking to oversee the elections. Professor Attahiru Jega’s tenure expires in July 2015.
With Jega out of the way, Jonathan would appoint another INEC chairman who would further postponement of the election.
SaharaReporters sources stated that President Jonathan is seriously considering an “Interim Government of National Unity” that would elongate his tenure till 2017. That would mean he spends eight years in power as President, the equivalent of two terms.
In 2011 as he assumed office, his first effort was to call for a new six-year term arrangement, which was shot down by Nigerians. He also recently attempted to smuggle in a new constitution by the back door through the National Conference.