INEC Chairman Insists on Feburary 14, 2015 General Election

February 5, 2015 12:41 pm

, chairman of the Independent National Electoral
Commission (), has told his aides that he plans to inform the
meeting of the Council of State that the Commission is fully prepared
for the February 14, 2015 elections.

According to INEC sources who spoke to Sahara Reporters, Jega indicated
that he also intended to brief the council on a few outstanding minor
logistical issues which he said INEC would be able to take care of in
the next week before February 14 when the election is schedule to begin.

The chair of the electoral commission however expressed concern that the
Nigerian armed forces, despite openly claiming to be fully prepared for
the elections, had refused to meet with INEC to discuss specific roles
that each of them would play.

One source said that some INEC officials believe that the military’s
uncooperative attitude arose from a scheme by President Goodluck
Jonathan and his supporters to frustrate the elections.

They are suppose to meet to help safeguard electoral materials and distribute them across the nation.
As far back as October 2014, Sahara Reporters had disclosed that
Jonathan was less interested in the elections than in the elongation of
his tenure.

Jonathan called a meeting of Council of State to hold in Abuja on
February 5. Sources said the President’s major agenda was to persuade
former Nigerian leaders, some state governors and opposition figures to
agree to the idea of postponing the elections for at least two months.
The president’s main argument, according to those familiar with the
scheme, is that INEC was ill-prepared to hold elections on February 14.

One source told SR that Jonathan had secured the support of former
military dictator, Ibrahim Babangida, for the postponement of the
elections. Babangida’s political legacy included annulling the June 12,
1993 presidential polls, an action that precipitated a major political
crisis in for several years. The election had been described by
local and foreign observers as freest and fairest.

Another source told SR that ex- President Olusegun Obasanjo plans to
boycott the meeting of the Council of States. As at press time, we were
unable to find out if Muhammed Buhari, the presidential candidate of the
APC plans to attend the council meeting. 

An aide of Mr. Buhari’s said the presidential candidate would lead
opposition governors to the council in order to fight against the
extension.

Should Jonathan succeed in postponing the election by two months, Jega
would be approximately one month away from the end of his tenure, the
President will send him on a terminal leave and bring in his replacement
to conduct the election.

But SR has learnt that the President doesn’t have any interest in
conducting elections instead he is interested in pushing for a two-year
Interim Government of National Unity to be headed by him. His aides are
supposed to meet with the National Leader of the APC, Bola Tinubu to
offer him the VP slot on the IGNU.
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