By Tony Ogbechie, Asaba
The ruling People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Delta State and the main opposition party, All Progressive Congress (APC) are currently engaged in war of words over alleged plots to subvert the ballot during this Saturday’s local government elections in the state.
The two major political parties are accusing each other of allegedly planning to cause violence and rig the election.
PDP threw the first salvo earlier on Wednesday in a statement by it’s publicity secretary, Dr. Ifeanyi Osuoza who accused the APC of plans to instigate violence during the election.
Osuoza said the opposition party is not prepared for the election, adding that candidates of the APC failed to campaign because they had nothing to showcase.
He said the APC at both the state and federal levels has failed Deltans in all ramifications, and urged the electorates to cast their votes for PDP candidates in Saturday’s local elections.
“APC simply has nothing to offer Deltans and Nigerians and intelligence reports from very reliable sources suggest that the APC, with nothing tangible to campaign with, is seriously considering the option of unleashing violence and mayhem in strategic parts of the state during the polls, with the intent to disrupt the exercise, intimidate eligible voters and even frighten and harm innocent Deltans on election day,” Osuoza stated.
But in a swift reaction, publicity secretary of the APC, Sylvester Imonina, Esq, said PDP hurriedly raised the alarm of planned violence because the APC uncovered the ruling party’s plot to compromise the process in collusion with Governor Ifeanyi Okowa and the Delta State Independent Electoral Commission (DSIEC).
Imonina in a statement late Wednesday, alleged that the electoral umpire has been compromised by the state government with the recent presentation of eight Sports Utility Vehicles (SUV) to members of the commission.
“There is also promise for cash rewards for the key staff of DSIEC before, during and after the elections.
“As a result of this unholy alliance/promise, information at our disposal says a deal has been struck between DSIEC, Delta PDP and the governor to compile names of all their candidates whom they want declared, to DSIEC and a venue has been arranged for the submission of the names to avoid the prying eyes of the public.
“Also, it is/was part of DSIEC, PDP and the governor’s arrangement not to provide voting materials to APC strongholds in the state. Though, results will come out of those places,” Imonina alleged.
Contrary to the PDP claims that APC failed to campaign, Imonina stated that his party’s candidates vigorously went round their areas of jurisdiction to seek for votes, adding that the outpouring of support from the grassroots indicated that Deltans have rejected the PDP.
Alleging that posters of APC candidates were being destroyed, Imonina, further alleged that there were plots to arrest some key APC leaders on trump up charges before the election.
He also accused security agents and other stakeholders of being compromised to do the bidding of the ruling PDP on election day.