By Mbadiwe D Emelumba
The supreme court of Nigeria has again awarded the governorship election in Bayelsa to the PDP. The APC won the governorship election but the supreme court nullified the candidacy of the APC on Thursday because the running mate of the APC governorship candidate presented forged certificate for the election. This is the second judicial award of governorship to PDP, after the Zamfara case
What was the reaction of the PDP to the Bayelsa judgement? According to the party’s national publicity secretary, Lola Ologbondiyan, “ the PDP receives the supreme court judgement on Bayelsa, insists on Imo “. Why is the PDP insisting on Imo? According to the publicity secretary, “ The supreme court recognized the votes concocted by the APC and Senator Hope Uzodinma “ as the basis for its judgement and he claims that the recognition of these results from 388 polling units “ ended up increasing the total number of votes in the election to 950,952, over and above the INEC certified total accredited votes of 823,743”
Two points need to be made on this hypocritical stance of the PDP, to wit, One, the PDP has continued to insist that the results tendered in court by Governor Uzodimma and the APC were concocted and mind you these results came from polling units (388) where they also had their agents who have their own copies of results from the booths. The big question now is this: Is it not time for them( PDP)to publish their own copies of the results from these booths with their agents to prove once and for all that what Uzodimma and APC tendered were “ concocted “. And this is because it is is only by showing the world the results they have from these as one and the same with the ones with INEC and different from the ones Uzodimma and APC tendered that they can convince discerning minds that they are not making a mountain out of a molehill.
They had their chance to produce their own copies of these results in court but failed, for reasons best known to them. Since they are still taking about it,let them present the results now to the public to substantiate their claims or forever keep their mouths shut.
The second point is that they also failed to raise the issue in court, that is ,that if the results from the 388 booths were added there would be an increase over and above total number of accredited voters. Now they want to bring it up before the public. But they know why they never bothered in the first instance to canvass that point in court. Here is why. The PDP is playing to the gallery and being clever by half by adding only the results from the 388 polling units. Is it not common sensical that if results were excluded from 388 polling units the number of accredited voters and actual votes were also excluded? And when you add them up then the number of accredited voters and total votes cast will also increase. By simple calculation, when this is done the number of accredited voters comes to over a million. So why is the PDP pretending not to be aware of this if not because they have a different, sinister agenda
Let truth be told, the PDP is not pursuing the Imo case because they think they have a case but because they have a hidden agenda. Again here is how. When the PDP darkly warned the nation that it would make the country ungovernable, should Atiku Abubakar lose the 2019 presidential election, many did not take them serious. The threat was dismissed as the outburst of a defeated party that had come to the end of the road. And when Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo State alerted the nation that the PDP’s national protest against the Supreme Court’s judgment which removed Emeka Ihedioha, was a planned coup against President Muhammadu Buhari, some Nigerians also did not take him serious.
But the events of the past few weeks have confirmed that PDP is simply hiding under the Supreme Court judgment to cause anarchy in the country. Members of the party have just dusted their original script of making the country ungovernable after the majority of Nigerians rejected them and their presidential candidate in 2019. Apart from the national protests which took place in Abuja and other capitals away from Imo where Ihedioha was justly removed because INEC ought not to have declared him governor in the first place, the party has gone ahead to invite foreign powers to take over the current government by force.
However, the tragedy actually is that both the security agencies and even the federal government appear to be indulging PDP in its satanic avowal to commit treasonable felony all in the name of democracy. Not being satisfied with lampooning the Supreme Court and the justices for doing their job based on the principles of law, PDP is resorting to self help through violence, sabotage and invitation of foreign powers to interfere in Nigeria’s affair. Those who claim to be champions of rule of law and democracy are now pushing for the abortion of the civilian administration for interests that are neither altruistic nor patriotic.
Confirming that the petitions, (invitation of foreign powers), to UK and US was pre-planned, the PDP leaders referred to national protests against the “perversion of justice which has become a clear threat to peace, unity and stability of our nation and the survival of our democracy”. In other words, they had pre-determined the outcome of those deliberate and stage-managed protests which they had vainly hoped would have led to a serious clash between them and the security forces. They had also hoped that the APC members and supporters would challenge them to a duel.
What more evidence do we really need to submit that the Supreme Court judgment in Imo governorship election is just the tonic PDP needed to set in motion its well-oiled plan to topple the government of President Buhari and set the nation on fire from the resultant consequences? If not, both the PDP national leaders and their collaborators ought to have understood clearly the Uzodinma and APC’s case which gave rise to the Supreme Court’s judgment.
Every discerning mind conversant with the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria knows that Ihedioha ought not to have been declared the Governor of Imo State by INEC. First of all, he did not meet the constitutional requirement of winning one quarter of votes cast in two thirds of the local government areas of Imo State. Imo has 27 LGAs and Ihedioha, to be declared governor, should have won in 18 LGAs. He did not.
But most fundamentally, the APC and its candidate Uzodinma went to Court asking that those excluded results from 388 polling units which had been declared at that level, should be added to them in the overall tally of votes. Their contention was that they won the election, and ought to have been declared winners in the first place. It took PDP and its lawyers four days at the tribunal to dissuade it from admitting those exhibits. Eventually, the tribunal called in the police which authenticated the results.
Strangely, the tribunal, after being compromised, gave its judgment in favour of Ihedioha even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. APC members did not go to the streets to protest. Even when Ihedioha was declared wrongly by INEC, APC being the ruling party in Imo State did not embark upon violent protests. It sought justice through the courts. And a member of the Appeal Court gave ruling in favour of APC and Uzodinma, which finally paved way for the Supreme Court’s ruling.
As earlier noted, It is instructive that PDP which claimed that Uzodinma produced “fake” results from those units could not produce the “authentic originals”. Like the Supreme Court wisely declared, the onus was on INEC to disprove with contrary documents the ones submitted by Uzodinma and APC. They could not do so.
The judgment was not even whether Ihedioha met the constitutional requirement or not. It was simply on the fact that votes validity scored by APC and Uzodinma in 388 polling units were criminally excluded by INEC with the help of its collaborator, PDP. That was what the Supreme Court calculated and relied upon to retrieve Uzodinma’s stolen mandate. The highest court in the land simply gave its judgment based on facts before them and general principles of law.
But because the history of PDP 16 year rule is replete with sordid tales of electoral corruption, rigging, impunity and lawlessness, they can neither understand nor accept the fact that it did not actually win Imo State. Ironically, the Supreme Court which it castigated had previously given rulings that favoured PDP. But nobody protested against the court. Nobody wrote petitions to foreign governments.
And nobody alleged that the justices had been bribed with billions of naira.
What makes the difference between patriots and traitors is that the former are wont to adhere to the rules of engagement in the interest of democracy even when they feel badly hurt. But the latter are ready to rock the boat if they don’t have their way. The PDP by its uncharitable actions are proving convincingly that they are the traitors .
And this is why both the Federal Government and the security agencies should take more than a passing interest in this unfolding national security threat being championed by PDP and her leaders. Whereas democracy guarantees freedom of speech, association and even movement, it certainly abhors the seizure of government through violence and orchestrated anarchy. Democracy supports the change of government through the ballot as expressed by Nigerians and reinforced by the courts of the land. Any other thing to the contrary is treason and should be treated as such.
Emelumba is the Director of media Uzodimma campaign Organisation