The Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, and the All Progressives Congress, APC, in Delta State, were at the weekend locked in a war of words over alleged rigging plots against one another in the forthcoming election.
The PDP which threw the first salvo accused the APC of mobilising federal might to rig the elections while the APC on its part accused the PDP in the state of recruiting thugs to do the same.
The PDP in a statement by its State Publicity Secretary, Dr Ifeanyi Osuoza, said; “Our thorough investigations reveal that the first ploy in the uncovered series of stratagems to tinker with the February 23 and March 9th elections, is a deceptive tactic designed to make President Buhari and the APC candidates gain the upper hand through the underhand manipulation of pre-loading and stuffing of the Card Readers before accreditation with pre-determined names of fictitious voters.
“In addition to this brazen plot, we also have it on good authority that the ultimate plan of the supposed independent electoral umpire is to allegedly swap the original result sheets at the collation centres, all part of the grand desperation to manipulate the electoral process, short-change the will of the people and rig the election in favour of the unpopular Buhari and the APC candidates.
Also, the PDP expressed shock at alleged “impeccable information of a martial directive from the high command of the APC, to INEC to do everything possible, both legitimate and illegitimate, legal and illegal, covert and dubious, crooked and manipulative, to ensure that they deliver victory to the APC Candidate for Isoko Federal Constituency, at all cost, during the Saturday, February 23, 2019 National Assembly election in Isoko land.”
The PDP thus asked the APC to think twice on its alleged plans.
The spokesman of the APC Campaign Council for the 2019 General Election, Dr. Cairo Ojougboh, warned the PDP against rigging the elections, saying “if PDP brings their rigging hands, we will cut it off; if they bring their rigging legs we will cut it off, but if they are ready for a peaceful, free and fair election, they are welcome”.
Saying the APC is prepared for the elections, Ojougboh alleged that the PDP is known for rigging elections.
On PDP allegation that the APC wants to rig it out in Isoko Federal Constituency, he said PDP was crying foul having known it would lose the election for fielding a candidate that is not the choice of Isoko people.
Ojougboh said: “Leo Ogor (PDP candidate) was my colleague when I was in the House of Representatives, and of course we thank God for him. You know that physically he has not been very strong, and the Isoko people have said that they need somebody who is sound physically and otherwise.
“So when PDP decided to compromise their position, it is not my concern that the Isoko people are now saying that they need somebody who is healthy. And Joel Onowakpor is the person that they want. So because they know that they have lost, that is why they are shouting. Everybody should ignore them”.