A media advocacy network of the All
Progressives Congress, the Progressives Media Organisation (PMO) has commended Kogi state government for her courage to protest the recent visa ban imposed on politicians alleged to have rigged the November 2019 election in the state by the United States of America.
In a statement signed by the national publicity secretary of PMO, Peter Iorter, the
classification of 2019 Kogi governorship election as flawed by the US Department of State as flawed as a show of partisan interest.
According to US report, some high profile Nigerian politicians are alleged to have engineered acts of violence, intimidation, or corruption that harmed Nigerians and undermined the democratic process.
Iorter described Kogi state government’s response to the US report as apt and timely as it has laid mischievous propaganda being milled by those who were rejected at the polls to rest.
“The government has demonstrated that it cannot shy away from defending the mandate of good people of the state which it overwhelmingly secured in the contest that produced His Excellency Alhaji Yahaya Bello as the governor.
“No responsible government will fold its arms and watch helplessly as the collective sensibility of its people is being insulted with the impunity currently playing out.
Misguided individuals unfortunately have seen this as an alibi to live in their imaginary paradise ushered by a never-was electoral success.
“While we must categorically state here that it is the prerogative of the US to decide who holds its visa or otherwise, we however find it preposterous and disturbing that the sovereignty of our dear nation is being called to question here.
No doubt the support of our partner nations is critical to further strengthen our electoral management and by extension our democratic journey. We however view the US’ condemnation of the 2019 governorship election in Kogi, adjudged to be fair and credible as a show of partisan interest and meddlesomeness.
“Admissibly, electoral contests in the country are highly volatile. A pocket of grey areas may have been witnessed during the contest but a larger part of the process was free and fair and indeed met the expectations of local and foreign observers.
“As a country governed by regulations, there are provisions in our relevant laws that spell out sanctions for electoral fraud and malfeasance. It is therefore only respectful to allow our constitutional provisions as an independent country deal with identified electoral fraud perpetrators instead of the instigating overtures of the United States.
“President Muhammadu Buhari has
consistently demonstrated commitment to free and fair polls across the country through the provisions of necessary logistics, manpower and security that will make our votes count and foster the confidence of citizens.
It will therefore breed the suspicion of unhealthy interference if our Super Power neighbours continue to make utterances that will erode the confidence of our people in our electoral process.
“Our judiciary, a creation of the constitution has at tripartite level looked into the November 16, 2019 governorship election, up to the Supreme Court where the eminent justices agreed that the election was in total compliance with extant provisions,” he said.
PMO said history will be kind to the current leadership of Kogi state for “unequivocally standing up against the glaring master-slavery mentality of powers that be in a way that gives all Kogites a sense of pride.
“The sovereignty of our dear country is a national treasury that must be guarded with all needed grit.”