Threatened by the fear of losing his re-election bid, President Goodluck Jonathan has mapped out three fierce approach to deliberately cause the elections scheduled for February 14 to fail, as disclosed by several sources within the Presidency. Based on the astonishing disclosure, President Goodluck will rather hand over power to the military rather than to General Muhammadu Buhari in the event that the APC candidate wins the election.
As the election date is creeping close, Mr. Jonathan had perceived that his hopes for winning re-election had become gloomy. According to Sahara Reporters, a popular Nigerian News Website, the president suffered extreme anxiety when he discovered that a good number of governors of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) had been working silently in favour of the opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) to bring his chance of being re-elected to naught. Except for Governor Godswill Akpabio of Akwa Ibom, Mr. President is doubting that he can rely on the support of any of the other governors.
It seems many PDP governors were unhappy that Mr. Jonathan left them during the party’s primaries and are reportedly rewarding the president by acting conspicuously uninvolved in his campaigns while actively embracing the campaign of Muhammadu Buhari, the APC’s presidential candidate as revealed by another source.
It was also revealed that Mr Jonathan held a very long meeting two days ago with his allies within his administration and decided that the forthcoming elections must be frustrated at all cost. The more shocking aspect is that the two sources said that Mr. Jonathan intends to meet with the Council of State on Thursday to lure its members to write a proposal to reschedule the polls to a later date. Rather than having an election, Mr President intends setting up a new provisional government that would be called “a government of national unity” of which he will be the head for 18 months to two years. Whether or not the council will write the proposal to postpone the already scheduled elections is still uncertain. The members of the said council are past heads of state and presidents, but some of them have openly criticized the past record of Mr. Jonathan.
One of the sources mentioned that, as part of the big approach to ruin the elections, Mr Jonathan would decline to pay the balance of the contract that was awarded in the face of Naira devaluation for the printing of ballot papers. It was also disclosed that the contractor, who claimed to be sourcing his foreign currency from the black market, is now asking for a modification to his contract. The contractor seeks to get N210 for a dollar, but President Jonathan and his allies have declined to help the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) procure the balance. Rather than help procure the fund, they told INEC to source for a local Nigerian printer to print the ballot papers. Meanwhile, the man chairing INEC and his assistants have been reluctant to accept the idea of using a local printer saying that such arrangement might make a mess of the final result as corrupt politicians would use a considerable amount of money to print illegal duplicate papers that will be used to rig the election as was seen some years back.
An internal source at INEC disclosed to Sahara Reporters that INEC chairman and other top officials have a suspicion that the Jonathan administration have been working seriously to weaken the credibility of the commission. The source said that there is huge internal sabotage currently on at INEC. He said that some resident electoral commissions were giving contradictory statements and reports about the commission’s readiness for the February elections, without clearing with the headquarters. He went further to say that even irrelevant materials have been stolen from INEC offices all working towards undermining the possibility of the election to hold on the scheduled date.
The second of the three strategies mapped out by the president is to the recruit some members of the defunct National Conference to press the case for rescheduling the elections until Nigerians talk over, adopt and implement the resolutions of the confab. In a bid to achieve that plan, the Presidency has rubbed the back of Raymond Dokpesi, the owner of Africa Independent Television (AIT) with more than N2 billion to arrange the campaign for rescheduling of the elections. By so doing, AIT and other willing media, Mr. Dokpesi will also press the case for introducing an interim national government that would be headed by Mr. Jonathan.
That might tell why Mr. Dokpesi’s AIT transmitted a live discussion by members of a “post national conference consultative committee”, two days ago in Abuja, to begin forming the case for the election to be rescheduled. The program which was aired live featured Bolaji Akinyemi, ex Minister of Foreign Affairs, Femi Okurounmu, who headed a nationwide consultation for the national conference, Maurice Iwu, a notorious ex INEC chairman, Mike Ezekhome, a lawyer, G.G. Darah, a professor and close associate of jailed former Governor James Ibori of Delta State, and Balarabe Musa, a former governor of Kaduna State whose involvement is perhaps the only surprise.
Dokpesi’s group is expected to use its broad war shoulders to give reasons that elections are untenable since INEC’s readiness is questionable as well as the security situation in Nigeria’s northeast is now in state of nerves.
Now the third of the three options is the possible use of the Nigerian military to make the election fail of which Nigeria’s Chief of Army Staff, General Tobiah Minimah, is reportedly a key player in achieving this very agenda. According to report, General Minimah, who is from President Jonathan’s Niger Delta region, was formally unwilling, but all of a sudden agreed to the plan to use the military to intervene in form of coup d’état should the elections go on and not come out in favour of the President Jonathan.
According to Time, an international news media website “delaying Nigeria’s elections may benefit Boko Haram more than democracy” the website went ahead to report that Nigeria’s election body INEC has raised concerns that the country may not be ready for elections planned for Feb. 14. It was also stated that On Feb. 4, barely 10 days before the elections, INEC commissioner Amina Zachary told Reuters that the elections may have to be delayed over fears that there aren’t enough registered voters to cast ballots. However, a new report by INEC Spokesperson as published by Sahara Reporters denies the original Reuters report On election Postponement
The sources stated that the president was angry that INEC chairman, Mr. Jega, had been keeping his distance from meetings with him and his presidential team. However, another source said that Professor Jega has insist on making sure that the election is free, fair and transparent maintained that he wants to be seen to have conducted a free and transparent election, in spite of the flaws. Jega went on to say that he sees no reason of visiting Aso Rock in order to hold meetings exclusively with Mr. President, who is a presidential candidate, and the president’s team. “If they succeed in postponing the election, the president might suspend Jega the way he did to former Central Bank Governor (Sanusi Lamido Sanusi) or ask him to go on compulsory leave pending the end of his tenure.”, the Presidency sources disclosed .
As Sahara Reporters was trying to hit publishing button of this report, several sources said that President Jonathan and his team had moved to the courts as a way of making the elections fail, at least five court cases have been filed to either reschedule the elections and disqualify the APC candidate Muhammad Buhari. And he is seriously looking for a federal high court judge to postpone the elections with a court order in the next few hours.