Governors elected on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, under the aegis of the PDP Governors Forum, have expressed their support for the electronic transmission of election results to be entrenched in the Electoral Act Amendment.
This they said would guarantee free, fair and credible elections in the country.
This was part of the communiqué issued at the end of the Forum’s meeting held in Bauchi, Bauchi State, on Monday 26th July 2021.
The meeting was held under the chairmanship of the governor of Sokoto State, Rt. Hon. Aminu Waziri Tambuwal.
The meeting deliberated on the state of the nation, and reviewed the deteriorating state of democracy, the economy and the security situation in the country.
It asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to deploy appropriate technologies to ensure that the votes of every Nigerian counts. It also called on the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), especially, the Universal Service Provision Fund (USPF), Nigerian Communications Satellite Limited (NIGCOMSAT), telecommunication companies and all other relevant stakeholders to ensure that universal access and service of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are provided especially in rural, un-served and under-served areas of the country before the 2023 general elections.
The meeting condemned what it termed the attempt to foist on all political parties the Direct method of conducting primaries through the Electoral Act Amendment Bill.
It said this method is prone to massive rigging.
The governors advised that political parties should be allowed to decide whether to use direct or indirect method of conducting primaries as part of internal democracy in political parties.
“The governors reiterated, once again, the need for the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) and other revenue-generating agencies of government to strictly abide by the constitution by remitting all their revenue less cost of production into the Federation Account as provided for by S.162 of the Constitution,” the communiqué read.
It also condemned what it described as the use of underhand tactics to arm-twist some PDP governors and other stakeholders to join the All Progressives Congress, a political party it said had “wrecked Nigeria’s economy, and turned Nigeria into a killing field.”
The PDP governors also accused President Muhammadu Buhari and his party, the APC, of turning the Presidential Villa, which belongs to all Nigerians, into the new APC headquarters, “where coerced PDP members are being paraded at intervals.”
On the economy, the meeting admonished the APC federal government to collaborate more with state governments to stem the unemployment scourge affecting the youths of Nigeria, through technology and increased production in all fields of endeavor.
It enjoined the government to stop paying lip service to the Ease of Doing Business, saying that foreign direct investments have continued to fall partly due to obstacles placed on foreign companies wishing to invest in Nigeria.
It cited the case of Facebook which it said wanted to invest in Nigeria but is being frustrated by regulatory authorities.
The PDP governors also decried the seemingly intractable security problem in the country, saying it time to bring the activities of bandits, kidnappers and terrorists to an end through increased use of military equipment, traditional means of conflict resolution and technology for surveillance and the development of the political will to flush them out.
“Kidnapping, banditry and terrorism are not business ventures as claimed by APC but heinous state crimes that are destroying the Nigerian economy, the educational and social future of our children and causing significant social upheavals in society,” it stated.
The PDP governors also enjoined all Nigerians to take advantage of the ongoing registration of voters by INEC to register to vote, “thereby arming themselves with the necessary tools in the struggle to rescue Nigeria from the APC maladministration.”
The meeting was attended by Governors Aminu Waziri Tambuwal, Sokoto; Okezie Ikpeazu, Abia State; Udom Emmanuel, Akwa Ibom; Douye Diri, Bayelsa; Samuel Ortom, Benue; Ifeanyi Okowa, Delta State; Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, Enugu; Nyesom Wike, Rivers; Seyi Makinde, Oyo; and Ahmadu Fintiri, Adamawa.
Others were Governors Godwin Obaseki, Edo; Bala Mohammed, Bauchi; Darius Ishaku, Taraba, and deputy governor of Zamfara State, Mahdi Mohd.