From Paul Ibe
The Ohanaeze Youth Council, OYC, has faulted the recent creation of additional 30,000 polling units by chairman of Independent National Electoral Commission INEC, Prof. Attahiru Jega, almost five months to the 2015 general polls, calling for immediate cancellation of the exercise.
Other groups have called for the immediate sack of Prof. Jega for what is termed a grand design to further marginalize the South East and give undue electoral advantage to the North.
According to the body, the cancellation became necessary because the 2006 census on which the recent creation of new polling units across Nigeria was based was flawed and lopsided.
It, therefore, advocate fresh census in the country, saying no census was conducted in Igbo land during the last one because there was no conducive atmosphere for exercise in 2006.
In a press statement made available to newsmen in Enugu, signed by its Secretary General, Uzochukwu C. Uzochukwu and Secretary Board of Trustees, Mazi Okwu Okwu, OYC described the exercise as crooked.
The group, insisted that there is no justifiable reason for 21,000 units allotted to the Northern part of the country, adding that it was a ploy to continuously give the North undue advantage over other segments of the Nigeria.
The statement read: “It is appalling that the INEC chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega, could descend so low as to play ethnic politics, especially the dictates of the Northern irredentists by using the highly flawed, controversial and contested census as a basis for polling units delineation.
“It is on records that the Igbos account most for the so-called Northern populations that have been erroneously used to give North more polling units.
“We the NEC of Ohanaeze Youth Council grievously strike out against the dubious undercurrents of INEC as electoral umpire in the allocation of polling units to geo-political zones in the country and accuse INEC of a premeditated attempt to rig the 2015 general elections.” especially the Presidential election in favour of the North,” they said.
“We do not know of any rule and or sensibility measures that will permit the criminal acts of changing the electoral law cum rules few months to 2015 general elections, not to talk of obnoxious creation of superfluous polling units fewer months to the electioneering campaigns and voting time.
“This is a ploy for rigging at the electioneering polling units that will continue to give the self-styled “born-to-rule Arewa North” flagrant influences and favour at the expense of the South.
“We, therefore, call for fresh census exercise that will reflect the social indexes and internal contradictions that will help in accountability, governance, socio-economic and elections planning and sustainable development that will take care of tribes, religions and cultural strata.” It maintained.