The presidential candidate of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC) in the April polls, Major-General Muhammadu Buhari (rtd), has faulted Wednesday’s validation of the victory of President Goodluck Jonathan by the Supreme Court, describing it as politically motivated.
He said the country would live with the consequences of the verdict.
The former Head of State, who issued a statement in response to the apex court’s ruling on last April’s presidential election, chided the judiciary for ignoring complaints of irregularities brought before it by CPC.
“The country now has to live with the consequences of the actions of PDP government in collaboration with INEC, police and security services over the last 10 years. A country on the brink of developing into the major continental power in 1999 is now a fractured society, corruption everywhere, violence everywhere, a sense of helplessness and hopelessness nearly everywhere. While the country is sliding into this chaotic state, PDP governments at the centre and in the states are engaged in massive and mindless plunder of the country’s resources in total disregard of the suffering masses,” he said in the statement.
Speaking in the same vein, the National Publicity Secretary of CPC, Mr. Rotimi Fashakin, described the judgment as failing to meet the people’s desire for justice in the electoral process.
Buhari said he was surprised that the apex court could not take cognisance of the fraud in the near 100 per cent vote count in some parts of the country and the refusal of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to release the biometric data to enable CPC prove its case.
“No election can be validated if 100 per cent of those registered all cast their votes in favour of the same candidate. It is for these reasons INEC refused to release the biometric data. The Supreme Court has turned a blind eye and deaf ear to these gross irregularities,” he said.
Buhari maintained that the series of violent eruptions that had taken place in some parts of the country were direct consequences of the flawed electoral process.
Referring to the Lemu Panel of Enquiry over the post election violence in parts of the North, Buhari said the panel had given a lie to those who wanted it to name him as the sponsor of the riots.
“The facts are that people were deeply angered and deeply provoked at the wanton conduct of the elections: the snatching and stuffing of ballot boxes, violence unleashed on opposition supporters, use of the police and elements of the army to intimidate, injure and kill opposition supporters and flagrant change of results after collation such as in Niger, Bauchi and Kaduna States,” he said.
Buhari cautioned that unless immediate steps were taken to drastically reduce the cost of governance in the three tiers of government, the country might well slip into chaos.
According to him, the government must take practical steps to avert the looming chaos in the New Year, by drastically reducing the cost of governance in the three tiers of government.
He advised that salaries and especially allowances should be drastically reduced while security votes should be abolished and allocations to the armed forces, police and security services should be transparent and accountable.
Buhari further said the administration must ensure that foreign travels and estacodes should be stopped for at least six months other than for the Presidency, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and medical emergencies.
“Government House expenses in all the states should be drastically reduced, foreign travel suspended for a while. The National Assembly should give a lead in reducing their allowances substantially and stopping their foreign travels,” he said.