The presidential candidate of the opposition party, the People’s Democratic Party, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, reacted to the decision of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to postpone the presidential/national assembly elections and the elections of the Gubernatorial/House of Assembly.
Professor Mahmood Yakubu, chairman of the Commission, told reporters in the press center of the commission’s headquarters in Abuja, the country’s capital, that the polls would not proceed as planned because of the difficulties faced by the Commission.
He explained that the decision to postpone the polls followed a careful review of the implementation of the logistics and operational plans put in place for the exercise.
Atiku, in a statement he personally signed in the early hours of Saturday, called the situation unfortunate.
He criticized President Muhammadu Buhari for not using the time he had to organize the elections.
He linked INEC’s actions to Esau’s biblical hand but to Jacob’s voice.
The statement read: “As you know, the Independent National Electoral Commission has announced a postponement of the elections until 23 February and 9 March respectively.
“The Buhari administration has had more than enough time and money to prepare for these elections and the Nigerian people were poised and ready to perform their civic responsibility by voting in the elections earlier scheduled for Saturday, 16 February 2019.
“This postponement is obviously a case of the hand of Esau but the voice of Jacob. By instigating this postponement, the Buhari administration hopes to disenfranchise the Nigerian electorate in order to ensure that turn out is low on the rescheduled date. Nigerians must frustrate their plans by coming out in even greater numbers on Saturday, 23 February and Saturday, 9 March respectively.
“Knowing that the Nigerian people are determined to reject them, they are desperate and will do anything in their power to avoid their rejection by the Nigerian people.
“Their plan is to provoke the public, hoping for a negative reaction, and then use that as an excuse for further anti-democratic acts.
“As such, I call on all Nigerians to be patient. We have tolerated the maladministration of this government for four years. We can extend our tolerance a few more days and give them our verdict via our votes.”