2015 polls: We never called for postponement, Northern delegates to National conference
By Alex Uangbaoje, Kaduna
Northern Delegates Forum to the 2014 national conference yesterday distanced itself from calls by some delegates of the conference to postpone the 2015 general elections saying the conference never discussed postponement of the election from the scheduled dates.
Chairman of the forum, Ibrahim Coomassie (rtd) who stated this while reacting to the call by the delegates in a statement made available to newsmen in Kaduna yesterday, denied deliberations on the election postponement at the conference describing it as strange and unbecoming of some of the delegates to claim the conference endorsed the postponement of 2015 general election.
According to him, “It has been brought to the attention of the Northern Delegates to the 2014 national conference which took place from the 17th of March to 20th August 2014 that the conference recommended the postponement or shifting of the scheduled 2015 general election as being canvassed by some delegates in a recent press statement.
“As a distinguished delegate to the conference and also chairmen of the Northern Delegates Forum, I wish to categorically state that the issue of postponing or shifting the 2015 general election was never discussed either at plenary or committee sessions throughout the duration of the conference. No mention was even made during the debate on some of the recommendations of the committees at plenary.
“It is therefore strange and unbecoming of some of the delegates to come out after the end of the conference on 20th August with the submission of conference report to Mr. President claiming that the conference endorsed the postponement of 2015 general election. This is certainly not the position of the 2014 conference, but the opinion of the canvassers who want to hide under the 2014 national conference,” Coomassie said.
The Arewa delegates however disassociated itself from the stand of the so called delegates which it described as illegal statement bent on misrepresenting the goodwork done by the 2014 National conference.
“It’s unfortunate that few days to the scheduled 2015 general elections to which government has committed huge resources and the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC responsible for the conduct of elections has assured Nigerians that they are fully prepared for the elections, some individuals or groups who do not wish Nigeria well have embarked on an unpatriotic call for the shifting of the 2015 elections.
“The insecurity reasons being bandied around for the postponement are not tenable as the Chief of Defence Staff and the Inspector General of Police have on several occasions assured Nigerians that the military and the Nigeria Police are prepared for the 2015 elections and will provide adequate security to INEC staff and the electorates during and after the elections. So why the call at this late hour?
“On behalf of the Northern Delegates, I wish to call upon INEC not to heed to this sponsored unpatriotic protests and call by some motley crowd. Nigerians are eager and in high spirits to exercise their civic responsibility of electing candidates of their choice, this process should therefore be allowed to take its course.
“We call upon all Nigerians to give peace a chance and ensure the the forthcoming elections are conducted free and transparently without rancor and to the satisfaction of all Nigerians and all those who love our dear country,” Coomassie strongly advised.