The National Chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Iyorchia Ayu, has warned the Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government against compromising the integrity of the 2023 general elections.
Ayu gave the warning on Thursday while receiving the European Union (EU) Election Exploratory Mission to Nigeria, led by Mette Bakken, at the party’s National Headquarters, Abuja. He said the major opposition party will resist any attempt to compromise the forthcoming general elections, adding that the PDP does not want to be short-changed again. Ayu, therefore called on he called on the EU to send high-level and large-sized observers to Nigeria to monitor the 2023 general elections due to the nation’s large population. He said: “We are prepared as a party to do the needful as far as the 2023 general elections are concerned. But we are worried about the tendency and capacity of the State to manipulate critical technologies to our disadvantage. We need to pay close attention so that we are not short-changed again. “There are security challenges in some states, I think six or so states. We hope the government will stamp out the insecurity there early enough for elections to be held there with transparent outcomes. We will no longer accept questionable harvests of votes from inaccessible areas. “In the past, those were areas where the ruling APC did what they love doing best: bringing votes that subverted the will of the people. Even though we are going to police our votes, it’s important that the EU sends a large number of observers ahead of the elections. “We need a large EU Observer Mission here. We don’t want token missions. This is because Nigeria is such a big country, with some states being bigger than some EU Member-States. And we need, among the observers, people with technical capacities too. Election observation has shifted from manual to technology. You need to keep talking to the government and critical stakeholders so that the APC does not subvert the democratic will. “We appreciate the efforts of the EU and thank the Observer Missions for their continued interest in the democratization process in Nigeria which is close to 25 years. We want the world to know that what is happening in Nigeria is democratic, transparent and credible. “We do not want to be short-changed again. We believe we won the presidency in the 2019 general elections. We were injured in 2019, and we don’t want a second injury in 2023.” Speaking earlier, the leader of the Mission, Bakken said the EU Mission was in Nigeria to interface with relevant government bodies, Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs); and, in line with the EU Methodology, look at the possibility of deploying the EU Observer Mission for the scheduled 2023 general elections.
This article was originally published on Naija News