By Yekini Jimoh
The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the Western Senatorial District of Kogi State has resolved to go to court over the alleged malpractices that took place during the recall process conducted by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) for Senator Dino Melaye on April 28.
Rising from a special meeting held Tuesday in Kabba, the PDP in a communique signed by the Senatorial Chairman, Taiwo Kola-Ojo, reflected the disappointment of party members, who complained that though they never at any time signed the petition against Melaye, they were shocked to discover that their data and signatures were displayed during the verification exercise.
Fearing that the manipulations inherent in the exercise sign-posted a pilot scheme for perfecting rigging during the forthcoming general election in the country, party members have demanded the criminal prosecution of all those involved in signature forgery and in the presentation of deceased persons as sponsors of the recall.
The party also wondered how INEC could not see through the criminal manipulations in the voters’ data during the exercise, the Kogi West PDP served a notice to INEC to be ready to defend its negligence of duty, conspiracy and wasteful application of public fund.
The communique stated that the party’s action was not partisan but prompted by public good.
Members believed that the prosecution of the criminals and their collaborators will deter the commission in future and prevent wasteful expenditure of public resources.
While noting with pleasure that the failure of the exercise was substantially attributable to the role played by party members in the district, members again appealed to the people of Kogi West to avoid a repeat of the mistakes of the 2015 governorship election, during which many voted to substitute a tolerant and people-oriented party like the PDP to obtain the reign of terror, intimidation and persecution that prevails in Kogi State at present.
The communique further called on INEC to be more efficient in the on-going Continuous Voters’ Registration exercise in the state to avoid disenfranchisement of many intending voters, who are still unable to register, owing to poor access to registration machines.
The party commended its members for remaining steadfast in siding with the party, the hostility against opposition parties in the state notwithstanding.