UPDATED: Crisis brews as Nigeria awaits election results
•Buhari widens lead over Atiku – Report
•Declare Atiku winner now – PDP
Nigeria is passing through tense electoral stage as voters and the political class await the results of Saturday presidential and National Aseembly polls.
Already preliminary results appear to show that the incumbent Muhammadu Buhari has widened his lead over his challenger, Abubakar Atiku.
SAHEL STANDARD had reported the wide margins from exit polls conducted across northern states early this morning.
The tension is stoked by recent results that showed that the Senate President Bujola Saraki.
Both Saraki and his counterpart in the lower chamber belong to the opposition ruling party that has Atiku as its presidential flag bearer.
The situation across the country, however, confirmed that the political parties are getting worked up by results trickling in from the electoral commission.
Both leading parties are accusing each other of attempt to alter the results at collation centres.
The ruling party has so far concentrated on releasing results nationwide which confirmed its lead in the election.
Many of the results from Kwara to Adamawa were eventually corroborated officially by the electoral body.
An APC chieftain, Bashir Maidugu stated that President Buhari has won the election going by results from the party’s agents across the federation, adding, “We have the results from our agents and it is clear Mr President has won with wide margin.
“Nobody is manipulating any results. The PDP should concede defeat and accept the will of the people”, he said.
The PDP, however, rejected such postulation, insisting that it has won the election and should be declared winner.
In a statement by the Publicity Director of PDP, Kola Ologbondiyan, charged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to immediately announce results as delivered from the polling units and declare the people’s candidate, Atiku Abubakar, the winner of the February 23 Presidential election.
The statement reads further: “Our position is predicated on clear and verifiable results across the nation, showing that Atiku Abubakar is in clear lead both in spread and total number of votes cast.
“Intelligence available to us is that INEC is delaying the announcement of results following directives by the Buhari Presidency and the All Progressives Congress (APC), which are bent on altering the figures from the polling centers and allocate fictitious figures for President Muhammadu Buhari, particularly in northern states.
“Curiously, INEC server is now shut down, results are no more being transmitted and the reason is to enable the APC to inflate figures from six designated states.
“We call on international observers and election monitors to insist on a transparent process of transmission of results and the monitoring thereof.
“We already have reports of how APC governors in the northern states have been making desperate effort to tamper with the results of the elections in their respective states with the view to award conjured votes to President Buhari.
“In Kogi state, Governor Yahaya Bello has been making frantic moves to change results to suit APC’s intent and purposes as against the wishes of the people, expressly delivered at the polls.
“Nigerians already know how the Minister of Transportation and the Director-General of the Buhari Campaign, Rotimi Amaechi, used the
military to hold an INEC official in River state, Mrs. Mary Efeturi, hostage and insisted that she will not be released until she alters the results in favour of President Buhari.
“The PDP calls on INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu to note that in this age of Information Communication Technology, Nigerians already have the results as delivered at the polling centers and any attempt to alter any figure will be faced with vehement resistance.
“In delaying the announcement of the results, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu is
allowing the APC to turn him into a villain and directly pitching him
against the people.
“He should therefore extricate himself from the eejected APC and be on the side of the people, by immediately announcing the results as already delivered at the polling units and declare, the people’s candidate, Atiku Abubakar, the winner.
“Anything short of this is not acceptable to Nigerians, who had already expressed their wishes and aspiration at the polls”, the party noted.