A human rights group, the National Democratic Front (NDF), says the claims of Prince Uche Secondus, National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), that the Nigerian Army interfered with last week’s presidential and National Assembly elections are “too frivolous and cheap blackmail" to gain some sympathy from Nigerians.
A statement issued at the weekend by Bolaji Abdulkadir, NDF’s Secretary General, noted that the party “peddled” lies against the military.
The group, however, urged the Nigerian Army to ignore the PDP’s “bitterness” and focus on ensuring smooth conduct of the polls rescheduled for March 9, 2019.
The statement read: “Their claims have been most bizarre and often bordering on being hare-brained for the sheer ludicrousness because they at best fall in the region of unsubstantiated conspiracy theories. They issued threats on the wrong impression that Atiku was the popular candidate and that was before they knew how seriously Nigerians take the stains of corruptions on and around his person.
"Once they realized they have been lied to, they had no option than to reset their assignment to default and stay on the path of neutrality. Our view is that the PDP is expressing its bitterness at the directive given to the military to deal ruthlessly with any ballot box snatcher.
"This singular directive, which the military implemented with the strictest sense of responsibility to human rights, took the wind out of the PDP’s sail as many of the youths it had engaged to snatch ballot boxes became aware of the mortal risks involved in the once lucrative business and decided not to be sent on suicide missions.
“Secondus and his party’s obsession with the military must therefore be seen in the light of the foregoing. They are frustrated that power remains in the hands of the Nigerian people who have exercise same with the ballot. We, therefore, urge Nigerians to take heed when listening to the rant from the PDP because the party has failed on the relativity scale as it does not have the appropriate comparison for what they are trying to make Nigerians believe in.
"The PDP is not used to free, fair and credible elections, so it beggars belief what it is using as yardsticks to adjudge whether the poll met the expected standard that are alien to the PDP. The troops must ensure that next Saturday’s elections do not fall prey to ballot box snatchers that have been reactivated since the PDP suffered defeat at the presidential election.”