The Peoples Democratic Party on Monday urged the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, to resist attempts to compromise the commission.
It urged the electoral body to conduct the forthcoming general elections in a transparent manner.
The PDP’s National Publicity Secretary, Kola Ologbondiyan, made the call at a press conference in Abuja.
Ologbondiyan said Nigerians were interested in credible elections and were wondering if the commission under Yakubu would be up to the task.
He cited one of the provisions in the recently-released election guidelines which allowed simultaneous accreditation and voting as one of the areas the commission needed to re-visit.
He said simultaneous accreditation and voting would distort the electoral process.
The party’s spokesman also raised concerns over the continued stay of Mrs Amina Zakari in the commission despite the claim that she was related to President Muhammadu Buhari.
He further alleged that the process of employing electoral officers had been compromised to favour the ruling All Progressives Congress.
Ologbondiyan also claimed that more than half of the card readers to be used during the elections had become obsolete.
He said the situation could create confusion on election days and facilitate the use of incident form.
He said, “The PDP therefore charges Mahmood Yakubu to demonstrate his credibility and ability to conduct free, fair and transparent elections by taking urgent and decisive steps to show that he has not been compromised by the APC and the Buhari presidency.
“To do this, we demand that Yakubu should immediately rejig the electoral guidelines in a way that accreditation must be first concluded, number of accredited voters ascertained and openly announced before actual voting.
“Anything short of this will only validate the position of Nigerians that INEC has been compromised by the APC.”
Ologbondiyan said Yakubu could not claim to be committed to a credible election while Zakari remained the head of the collation centre.
He added, “While we note that Buhari has bowed to pressure from Nigerians and has eased out Ibrahim Idris as Inspector-General of Police, we urge him to also lend credence to the electoral process by easing out his relation by marriage, Amina Zakari, from INEC.
“We are aware that Amina Zakari has since taken over the duties of the INEC chairman at the instance of the Buhari presidency.
“Today, the international community is wondering how a sitting President can be insisting that his relation must be the retuning officer in an election in which he is participating.
“In the same way, following revelations that the process of recruiting INEC ad-hoc staff has been compromised to favour the APC, the PDP insists that Yakubu must publish the names of all the ad-hoc staff that have been recruited in their respective constituencies to enable voters in those areas to assess the independence and integrity of such electoral officers.”