Amina Zakari: Ezekwesili Accuses INEC Off Bowing To 'Buhari Pressure'
The Presidential candidate of the Allied Congress Party of Nigeria (ACPN), Dr. Obiageli Ezekwesili, has joined in the demand for the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mamoud Yakubu, to reverse the recent deployment of Mrs Amina Zakari, as one of its commissioners.
Zakari, whom the Peoples Democratic Party said was President Muhammadu Buhari’s relation, was on Thursday announced as the chairperson of INEC’s Results Collation Centre in the February 2019 elections.
Reacting to her appointment, Ezekwesili, in a statement on Saturday, said: “The INEC chairman appears to have bowed to pressure from the Presidency".
She described Zakari’s appointment as political corruption, “considering that having a relation of the President who is a contestant in the February 2019 presidential election amounts to an apparent Conflict-of-Interest situation".
According to her, such “repugnant deployment of Zakari to the collation centres suggests a brazen attempt to ease rigging for the APC’s candidate in the elections".
To ensure peace and give all the candidates a level playing ground, the ACPN presidential candidate asked the INEC to restore confidence in the management of the collation process by reversing the appointment of Zakari as chairperson.
“Zakari can be assigned another task farther away from tasks that can hinder electoral integrity,” Ezekwesili suggested.
Her statement read: “The INEC chairman has obviously bowed to President Buhari’s visible and increasingly brazen determination to not just rig but to steal the 2019 presidential election and throw the country into crisis.
"Or how else can one describe this repugnant action of placing the President’s niece, Mrs Amina Zakari, at the head of the centre for collation of election results?
“The President and INEC chairman should know that this extremely repugnant and provocative act of political corruption that seeks to undermine our democracy and destabilise the country shall be resisted by all patriotic Nigerians.
“I caution the INEC chairman and the Presidency to reverse this shameful posting immediately and safeguard the integrity of the 2019 elections".
Ezekwesili said that the latest development compounded doubts about the President’s interest in presiding over a credible 2019 elections when he refused to assent to the Electoral Amendment Bill 2018.
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