The All Progressives Congress has said that attempt by the opposition Peoples Democratic Party to demonise the party and President Muhammadu Buhari will not affect his victory in the forthcoming elections.
Malam Lanre Issa-Onilu, the APC National Publicity Secretary, said this in a statement on Thursday in Abuja, while criticising the PDP over its failed attempt to demonise the President Buhari-led administration.
Issa-Onilu said that the PDP had been deploying intimidation and blackmail tactics against the Independent National Electoral Commission particularly, and other state institutions ahead of the general elections.
“The PDP’s line of attack cannot affect President Buhari’s emphatic victory in the coming Feb. 16 presidential election.
“We have watched how panicky leaders of the PDP have become, having realised that they are heading for a crushing and humiliating defeat in the forthcoming general elections.
“In their confused and pitiable state, they have unconscionably hurled pedestrian allegations of partisanship and partiality against INEC and other state institutions.
“The PDP leader’s strategy is to regularly call out INEC and allege partiality towards the APC, thereby creating doubts in the minds of Nigerians and international community about the independence and credibility of the electoral body, “he said.
This, the APC spokesman said, was one of the odious antics of a desperate party that wanted to hijack presidential power, not on the strength of having a credible alternative, but on the strength of selfish propaganda.
According to him, the PDP has with such propaganda, masked its real motivation for seeking a return to power which is plundering of the public treasury.
Issa-Onilu called on Nigerians to judge between the APC and the PDP, who could be said to have been favoured by INEC.
This, he said, was especially when considering how the commission initially barred the APC from fielding candidates in Zamfara and Rivers States for the forthcoming elections.
He added that less than two weeks to the elections, the APC was still in courts to seek justice from INEC to enable it field candidates in the two states.
“Notwithstanding our protests, calling INEC’s attention to the fact that the PDP didn’t conduct any primaries in Kano State, the electoral body has opted to look the other way even in the face of glaring evidence,” Issa-Onilu noted.
He added that it was clear that the PDP was only interested in getting to power on a stolen mandate.
He said it was not surprising that the PDP celebrated INEC’s initial decisions on Zamafara and Rivers because it knew they stood no chance against the APC candidates in a free and fair election.
The APC spokesman, however, expressed shock at PDP’s allegation that the distribution of Permanent Voter Cards was being hampered by INEC to disenfranchise its supposed supporters.
He wondered how anyone could know the political party affiliations of those who were yet to collect their PVCs, let alone disenfranchise them.
He, however, stressed that the PDP and its leaders could not hold the APC responsible for their electoral misfortunes.
Issa-Onilu added that the PDP administration’s antecedents of treasury looting, mismanagement of the economy and widespread insecurity had put a big wedge between them and Nigerians.
“There is no doubt that the PDP will be roundly rejected at the forthcoming general elections. On our part, we are confident that Nigerians will renew our mandate, “ he said.
He maintained that the APC mandate would be renewed on the basis of its verifiable and multi-sector record of performance under the leadership of President Buhari.