by Citizens Platform
The All Progressives Congress, APC, has urged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to sanction President Goodluck Jonathan for violating the rule which bars political parties and aspirants from campaigning for the 2015 elections.
In a statement on Sunday by the APC’s National Publicity Secretary, Lai Mohammed, the women’s rally organized in Abuja by the first Lady, Dame Patience Jonathan was to campaign for the President.
The APC asked the Presidency to tell Nigerians why it had defied INEC rules by continuing to campaign for the 2015 elections contrary to INEC’s directive and urged the commission to sanction anyone responsible for the rally.
However, in its defence the Presidency said the rally was organised by the National Council of Women Societies in conjunction with the President’s wife’s office and that it would be unpatriotic of anybody to view the rally as a campaign for 2015 elections.
According to the opposition party, Dame Patience at the rally campaigned for her husband’s 2015 ambition.
The APC’s statement read, “While one of the PDP gong-bearers, Okupe, was telling Nigerians that President Jonathan has not informed anyone that he will contest in 2015, his wife was coercing hundreds of hapless women, including those in uniform, into a show of shame tagged a “peace rally’’, but in essence, a campaign for President Jonathan ahead of 2015.
“Defying INEC, this brazen campaign featured women clad in specially-made ‘ankara’ that bore the picture of President Jonathan. In what must rank as the first of its kind in Nigeria, women drawn from various security agencies – the same that will be expected to provide security for the 2015 elections – were coerced into a march of shame, as organisers of the campaign, masquerading as a peace rally ,blocked traffic and prevented citizens from earning their daily bread.”
The party called on “INEC to mete out appropriate sanctions to anyone, who has violated its ban on early campaigns for the 2015 elections, in view of the First Lady-driven phantom peace rally that is actually a facade for electioneering campaign, if the electoral umpire’s ban on such campaigns is to be taken seriously.”
Source: Citizens Platform
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