Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the ruling All Progressives Congress, Yekini Nabena has described the reports of international election observers, namely the European Union, National Democractic Institute and International Republican Institute as part of an international conspiracy against Nigeria.
“It is a western agenda to destabilize democratic process in Nigeria. These same forces have tried to use ethnic agenda but failed. They tried to use Boko Haram and other security challenges but the APC administration is up to the task.,” Nabena told journalists in Abuja.
He also faulted the reports of the three international mission which monitored Nigeria’s 2019 general elections, saying the reports were influenced by those who looted the country in the past in active connivance with international forces.
“It is on record that international forces had tried even before the 2019 elections to use some of their agents in Nigeria to discredit President Muhammadu Buhari’s re-election bid. Some of them, who were direct beneficiaries of looted funds in the past openly castigated the re-election plan through open letters and different conferences,” he alleged.
Nabena was reacting to the post-election reports of the European Union Election Observation Mission, EU-EOM, joint observation missions of the National Democratic Institute, NDI and the International Republican Institute, IRI, in which the three bodies accused the political class and state actors under the control of the presidency of vote-buying, highhandedness and intimidation of the media, observers, voters and members of the opposition.
The Bayelsa-born APC chieftain, who spoke with journalists in Abuja on Wednesday, said President Buhari proved himself a patriot and displayed a sincerity of purpose unlike past presidents who politicised and paid lip service to the June 12 struggle since 1999.
He described President Buhari as an apostle of democracy and credible elections, especially following his recognition and assent to June 12 as the country’s Democracy Day, adding that the recent move by some international observers to discredit the 2019 elections is a wasted effort.
He also described the reports as released by the EU, NDI and IRI as part of an international conspiracy against Nigeria. According to him, “It is a western agenda to destabilize democratic process in Nigeria. These same forces have tried to use ethnic agenda but failed. They tried to use Boko Haram and other security challenges but the APC administration is up to the task.”
Nabena noted that while there were isolated cases of irregularities, the election was credible and a marked improvement compared to the 2015 exercise. “Elections conducted under President Buhari have witnessed increased sanctity of votes and the entire electoral process. For example, the 2019 election witnessed increased use of the card readers and reduced the prevalence of vote-buying, violence, ballot box snatching and announcement of fraudulent election results,” he argued.