The Pan Niger Delta Forum has adduced reasons why the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, must be fired by President Muhammadu Buhari.
PANDEF stated its position through its Chairman, Air Commodore Idongesit Nkanga (retd), who spoke with Sunday PUNCH.
The body said it was strange that Yakubu is from the same region with Buhari, alleging that this was the first time such was happening in Nigeria.
Nkanga said: “The more truths we tell, the better it is for our country. As a matter of fact, the people that spoke are elders of this country and they want to leave this country a better place than they met it. And we know that, in this country, a lot of people are more loyal to their ethnic groups and religions than they are to the country.
“We found out that since 1960, the only time we have had a president or head of country having the umpire of the elections from his own ethnic group is this (government). Remember when former President (Goodluck) Jonathan was there, he said, when (Prof. Attahiru) Jega came, he had never met him and did not know him. Out of all the other heads of government that were listed during that press conference, if you look back, you will find out that there was none (that did such). So, we don’t want a case where after the 2019 elections, assuming Mr. President wins, people start murmuring that it was because he (Yakubu) was from his ethnic group and all that.
“If he (Buhari) wants to be honest, in fact, it is in his own interest that it was said that ‘you can get somebody from some other place to come and handle it’. And we do know that when he came in, Mr. President appointed Mrs. Amina Zakari, who we understand is related to him, as acting chairman; and because there were lots of noise-making, she was dropped and Yakubu was brought in. Yakubu is a fine person. I have met him before but, under the circumstances, (we need) to give credibility to what will be done. We don’t want noise; we don’t want people questioning for no just cause after the election. Anybody who believes that our position is not correct is not just being honest.”