The Buhari Media Organisation (BMO) has accused the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) of measuring President Muhammadu Buhari by the insidious standard of past PDP Presidents who never pretended to be averse to electoral manipulation.
This, it said, is the reason the opposition party finds it hard to believe that President Buhari would not interfere in the March 23 supplementary elections in some States to favour the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC).
BMO said in a statement signed by its Chairman Niyi Akinsiju and Secretary Cassidy Madueke that PDP is used to having a sitting President manipulate the electoral process using the federal might, especially after winning Presidential elections.
“We have a party which has rigging and electoral manipulation ingrained in its DNA, and Presidents who never had second thoughts about foisting PDP candidates on Nigerians at re-run elections.
“Back then, it was unthinkable for the then ruling party to lose close elections after winning the Presidential election. That was when the words ‘bandwagon effect’ took root in the polity.
“So it is not a total surprise that a party whose Presidential candidate and his key campaign coordinators lost their immediate wards during the February 23 elections, would dismiss President Buhari’s assurances of a level-playing field for all parties involved in the forthcoming supplementary gubernatorial elections.
“The fact that PDP-era Presidents did manipulate the process to favour their party does not necessarily mean that this President would take that path of infamy”, it said.
BMO also noted that the opposition party had never stopped accusing President Buhari of muzzling the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) even when the Commission had consistently shown that it was truly independent.
It said: “PDP had been unrelenting in making all sorts of allegations against President Buhari but it conveniently forgot how INEC stopped the ruling party from presenting any candidate in Rivers state, and that it took a last-minute court ruling to prevent a similar scenario in Zamfara State.
“These are unprecedented actions by the election management body which could never have happened in the PDP era where the Commission acted more like a federal government parastatal.
“We at BMO have also seen how a number of decisions taken by the current INEC leadership have favoured the opposition, but PDP wants Nigerians to believe that President Buhari has the Commission at his beck and call”.
On the election petition filed by the opposition party and its Presidential candidate Atiku Abubakar, the pro-Buhari group said the move would end up a wild goose chase because Nigerians never gave the PDP the mandate it claimed was stolen.
“They have the right to challenge the election outcome at the tribunal, but it would eventually be proved to be a frivolous petition”, said the group.