Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftain, Chief Sunny Onuesoke, has added his voice to those demanding for the immediate removal of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, before the 2019 general elections.
Onuesoke, who made the call while addressing members of Delta state chapter of Transition Monitoring Group (TMG) who paid him a courtesy visit in his office in Warri, Delta state on Friday, said the 2019 polls would not be free and fair with Yakubu in the saddle as chairman of INEC, expressing fear that he would compromise the results.
He pointed out that his fear is that the current INEC chairman may not be able to discharge his functions impartially because he hailed from the same region as the president, adding that only recently Nigerians saw the scandal of underage voters during the local government elections held in the North west state of Kano, a replay of the 2015 elections abnormally in large number.
“Besides that, what happened in the recent Osun state governorship election add credence to the argument that Yakubu may not conduct a free and fair election in 2019 election,” he noted.
He argued that for the fact that Yakubu Mahmood is a cousin to Buhari, he should not have been appointed in the first place, stressing that it is safe to say that he is there as INEC boss to protect Buhari’s interest.
The former Delta state governorship aspirant maintained that he had no confidence in INEC, adding that no amount of the commission’s preparations would convince him about its capability to conduct free and fair elections next year.
According to him: “Let’s not deceive ourselves; INEC is not prepared for credible elections. If there is any agency that is not prepared for 2019 election, it is INEC. I have no confidence in INEC. There is no amount of INEC’s preparations that will convince me.
“INEC chooses how it interprets laws to suit those they support. They choose the court orders to obey and the ones to disregard.
“In one state where it favours a particular, they obey. In another state, INEC will claim they are yet to see judgments not in favour of the party they support.”
He said in 2019, any attempt by INEC to negatively manipulate the will of the people would be resisted.
Consequently, he demanded the replacement of the INEC chairman with a man or woman of integrity from another zone in order to restore public confidence in the electoral body as it prepares for the 2019 elections.