The ruling Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has stated its preparedness for the forthcoming elections but kept mum on calls for postponement of the election, especially by one of the most senior officials of the government.
The All Progressives Congress, APC, and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, had rejected a suggestion by the National Security Adviser, Sambo Dasuki, that general elections slated to begin on February 14 be postponed.
Mr. Dasuki, who was speaking at Chatham House, London, last week stated that he had advised the electoral body, INEC, to consider postponing the election for at least three months to enable all Nigerians who were unable to collect their Permanent Voters Card, PVC to do so.
The INEC chairman, Attahiru Jega, earlier rejected the call.
Speaking at the launch of Mitigation Of Violence In Elections, MOVE, project by the International Foundation for Electoral Systems, IFES, on Monday, Mr. Jega said while he would not respond to media reports of Mr. Dasuki’s call, he could confirm that INEC is determined to hold elections in February.
“We have assured that the issue of concern, namely distribution of PVCs, will be addressed before elections; and the cards will be made for all registered voters. As evidenced in our preparations, we are ready to hold elections in February,” said the INEC Chairman.
The APC has equally rejected the proposal, saying Mr. Dasuki was merely speaking the mind of the Jonathan administration, which the party said is on the verge of being defeated, and requires more time to prepare.
The party said under no circumstance must the elections be scuttled.
Unlike the APC, however, the PDP did not categorically reject or condemn Mr. Dasuki’s statement, only stating its preparedness for the election.
The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Olisa Metuh, in a statement on Sunday stated that leaders and members of the party are working hard in all the nooks and cranny of the country adding that with its record of achievements and array of popular candidates at all levels, the ruling party will win overwhelmingly in not less than 25 states of the federation.
“We wish to restate that the PDP is fully ready for the general elections. We remain the only party enjoying the support of majority of Nigeria’s voting population across board. Our very strong political structures in all the states, a track-record of performance and array of very popular candidates at the national and state levels who Nigerians are eager to vote for guarantee us a sweeping victory at the elections,” he said.
Noting that Mr. Jonathan is the man to beat in the presidential poll, the PDP also assured of victory at the governorship, National Assembly and state assembly elections saying its candidates at those levels also enjoy the support of the majority of the voters in their respective states and constituencies.
The party, therefore, directed its members and supporters to close ranks and continue to work hard to ensure that it maintained its position in the polity.