The All Progressives Congress, APC, has described the public avowal of Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, to oppose the use of Card Reader in this month’s rescheduled elections as a vindication of its claim that the ruling party was desperate to rig the election or prevent it from holding.
The party in a statement issued in Lagos yesterday by its National Publicity Secretary, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, described as very curious the fact that the PDP that rushed to the press to deny the APC’s claims had now turned around to confirm them.
It said: “At the press conference we addressed on Wednesday, which rattled the PDP and the Jonathan Administration so much, we listed the conditionalities of the PDP/Jonathan Administration for holding the election: No PVCs, No Card Readers, No Jega and the fact that they want the military deployed to harass and intimidate voters.
“We mentioned ‘Card Readers’ at least three times during the press conference, and said they (PDP/Jonathan Administration) are doing everything possible to sabotage the machine and prevent its use.
“Both the spokesmen for the PDP and the Jonathan Campaign Organization rushed to the press to deny any such ‘reprehensible’ plan. But a few hours later, the spokesperson for the campaign organization told an incredulous country that they would oppose the use of Card Reader, apparently after the spokesmen were overruled by their party.
“Obviously, these men are outsiders in their own party and it is now obvious that the opposition knows more about the inner workings of their party than they do.’’
The APC also described the 15 lesser known political parties calling for the abandonment of the Card Readers as agents of the PDP saying “these syndicated threats are the latest indications of the mortal fear in the corridors of power about the machine that has now become the nemesis of election riggers and manipulators worldwide.
“Nigerians have sacrificed all they can to obtain their PVCs, which is now their most-prized possession. They have also hailed the plan by INEC to use the Card Reader to give Nigeria credible polls.
“Only dishonest politicians, those who plan to rig, those who have engaged in a massive purchase of PVCs and those who have something to hide are opposed to the use of the machine.
“For the avoidance of doubt, our party is ready for any tool, including the Card Reader, that will ensure that the votes of Nigerians will count in the forthcoming election.
“In this regard, we sincerely hope that the nationwide tests of the Card Reader to be carried out this week by INEC will not be sabotaged by those opposed to the machine.
“The Card Reader has been demonstrated to work, including at the Senate, and no one must come out to tell Nigerians anything to the contrary.
“The huge investments in providing PVCs for Nigerians will not be worthwhile if the cards would not be authenticated by Card Readers which, by the way, have been used in many other countries, all of them less endowed than Nigeria, in Africa.”