With just 48 hours to the rerun election in the Plateau Northern Senatorial zone, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has announced that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) would be sidelined from the forthcoming polls.
Mohammed Haruna, the INEC National Commissioner overseeing the North-Central geopolitical zone, made this revelation on Thursday during an inspection of sensitive materials for the impending election in Jos, the State Capital.
Reacting to the exclusion, the Inter-Party Advisory Council (IPAC) chairman in the state, Abubakar Dogara issued a stern warning.
He said “The position of IPAC is that it is either PDP participates in the election or all parties will not take part because the Court of Appeal said all political parties should participate in the election,” Dogara said.
Expressing dismay at the sudden turn of events, Dogara added, “We were not informed that one of us will not be part of the election and we are hearing it just two days to the election.”
He further highlighted the gravity of the situation, emphasising the importance of peace over electoral processes. “We prefer peace on the Plateau rather than elections or anything,” Dogara stressed, underscoring the fragile nature of peace in the state.
Meanwhile the All Progressive Congress (APC) Plateau State chapter has said it will not obey the boycott order called by the Chairman Inter- Party Advisory Council (IPAC) in the state, following missing of PDP logo and it’s candidates, in the Saturday re-run election.
Publicity Secretary of the party, Sylvanus Namang, who issued a statement in Jos, on Thursday said APC is not part of the order.
“The APC, for the avoidance of doubt, hereby totally and unequivocally dissociates itself from the position of IPAC which is purportedly on behalf of all political parties in the State.”
It assured that “the APC in the state is fully prepared for the Saturday re-run election which we remain very confident that our candidates will win”; Namang assured.
The APC spokesman, disagreed with the decision of the IPAC Chairman saying “This is a manifest and gross betrayal of trust by Alhaji Dogara Abubakar as no such meeting was held”; the APC spokesman added.
As tension escalate and uncertainty looms over the rerun election, stakeholders await further developments amidst the standoff between INEC, the PDP, and other political parties and their supporters.