Underaged Voters: PDP can’t differentiate between dwarves and children – APC

By Post Nigeria July 24, 2015 14:48

Underaged Voters: PDP can’t differentiate between dwarves and children  – APC

In a bid to rubbish reports that the All Progressives Congress, APC, mobilised the underaged to vote in the last general election, the leadership of the party on Friday said that the children seen on camera and various social media platforms with voters cards where mostly Lilliputians and midgets.

Speaking on behalf of the APC on African Independent Television, AIT, on a programme “Focus Nigeria” Lorencia Oyeama disclosed that Nigerians might have mistaken dwarfs, people of short stature as under aged voters.

Oyeama further congratulated the north for massively voting for President Muhammadu Buhari despite the fact he was totally rejected in the south-east geopolitical zone.

The Deputy National Chairman of PDP, Uche Secondus, had after the 2015 general election, listed the seven affected states as Kano, Jigawa, Kaduna, Gombe, Bauchi, Katsina and Kogi States, adding that based on concrete facts collated by the party’s field agents, majority of voters in the aforementioned states were in fact underaged.

Social critic, Femi Aribisala, during an interview gave credence to the allegation when he said, “While Kano, Katsina, Kaduna, Jigawa and Bauchi were posting humongous figures, Imo, Anambra and Abia were posting relatively disappointing figures.

    “Jigawa used to be a part of Kano. In the 2015 election, the votes of Jigawa and Kano combined were 3.1 million double that of Lagos which was only 1.4 million.

    “Cell-phone video recordings show that there was widespread under-aged voting in the North.”

The Former Executive Governor of Kano State, Rabiu Kwakwaso, once unwittingly boasted that the APC in the north used the Almajiris (who are typically below 18 years of age) to kick out former President Jonathan with their votes.

    “We hope that people around him (Jonathan) should be people who are experienced, who should not be talking of Hausas who are thrown away as Almajiris.

    “That is completely wrong, and it has gone a long way in galvanising people in the north to ensure that this Almajiri votes were used to kick them out of the villa.”

See : We used Almajiris to vote out Jonathan – Kwankwaso

During a town hall meeting in Abuja that preceded the presidential election, Former INEC Chairman, Attahiru Jega, had said that he was aware of the video clip of an underage male voter in Taraba that was circulating on the Internet.

He said that he had directed the state’s Resident Electoral Commissioner, REC, to investigate the clip, identify the polling unit where it happened, and trace the official that accredited the underage voter.

With the exit of Jega and the enthronement of Amina Zakari as the new INEC chair, nothing has been said on done about the underage voting that was rampart in the North.

While speaking, Oyeama said that said that there was no way the north could have used under aged voters.

    “The PDP are suffering from mistaken identity. They failed to understand that the people they saw on screen and social media were mostly Lilliputians, midgets and people of small stature.

    “Do you want to tell me that Akin and Paw Paw (Nollywood stars) are under aged voters if they had voted for Buhari.

    “There is a difference between children and midget, for the people in the north we thank them; you cannot use child voting to rob us of our deserved victory.

    “In the south–east, I thank the very very negligible people who supported us, some stood and some ran away.”

She added; “People laid down their lives, people lost their relatives in the north where there were threatened and people defied the bombs of Boko Haram to cast their vote”

Nigerians expressed their opinion that a large number of underaged voters in the just concluded elections would only serve to destroy a nascent democracy.

A group had alleged that more than 500,000 under aged voters were registered in the north. It stated further that the presence of under aged voters drastically increased the population of the electorate in the North.

Ex-militant leader Asari Dokubo had earlier said, “The huge turnout of under aged voters in the north in the just concluded general election was a conspiracy of the majority against the minority, to rig them out of power.”

Part one of the Electoral Acts states; “A person shall be qualified for registration as a voter if: He is a Nigerian; He has attained the age of eighteen years; He is ordinarily resident in the area covered by the registration centre in which he intends to register; He has presented himself to the registration officers for purposes of registration as a voter within the period allowed by the Commission for registration of Voters.’’

In the case of elections in the north, the above laws were not adhered to, political commentators stated.

Reports indicate that between 2011 and 2015, the votes of the South-West remained virtually constant, 4.6 million people in the South-West voted in 2011, while 4.2 million voted in 2015.

Compare this with what happened in the South-East. Five million people voted in 2011 but only 2.6 million voted in 2015, a drastic, clearly inconsistent drop of 2.4 million eligible voters.