The Federal Government has warned the main opposition Peoples

Democratic Party (PDP) not to throw Nigerian into anarchy out of its

desperation to grab power at all cost, saying Nigeria’s unity and

survival override any party’s ambition.

Briefing the media in Ilorin, Kwara State, on Thursday, the Minister

of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, said the ongoing

attempt by the PDP to discredit the results of the yet-to-be held 2019

general elections is an invitation to anarchy.

He said the latest manifestation of PDP’s avowed determination to

discredit the results of the 2019 elections is the statement credited

to the opposition party that it lacks confidence in the Independent

National Electoral Commission (INEC) and the party’s decision to set

up what it calls the Parallel Voting Tabulation (PVT) System.

”Consistently, the PDP has been attacking the two national

institutions that are most pivotal to the elections – the INEC and the

police. This is part of the party’s strategy to erode confidence in

the institutions, preparatory to faulting the outcome of the

elections.

”We have also been calling national and international attention to

this strategy by the PDP. We warned that the PDP will do everything to

scuttle the polls, failing which the opposition party will work to

discredit the results. The persistent accusation of planned rigging of

the polls, which is not evidence-based, the not-so-subtle threat of

violence issued by the PDP at its press conference on Wednesday and

the setting up of the PVT are all geared to achieve one objective:

discredit the election results,” Alhaji Mohammed said.

He said while it is standard practice for political parties to have

their own monitoring system during elections, what the PDP intends to

achieve through the PVT is to set up a pseudo electoral commission

that will announce its own concocted results and throw the nation into

crisis.

The Minister however warned the PDP of very dire consequences, should

it proceed to usurp the role of INEC.

”INEC is the only body statutorily imbued with the power to collate

and announce the results of national elections. The penalties for any

individual or organization that usurps these functions are clearly

spelt out. It is therefore necessary to remind the PDP not to sabotage

the 2019 general elections on the altar of desperation,” he said.

 Alhaji Mohammed said it is particularly instructive that the PDP’s

threat was issued on the same day its presidential candidate joined

the candidates of other political parties to sign the second peace

accord.

”The threat of fire and brimstone issued by the PDP, for no reason at

all, is incongruent with the stated position of its presidential

candidate that his ambition is not worth the life of any Nigerian.

Attacks on the institutions charged with organizing and securing the

elections constitute a recipe for anarchy, while anarchy spares no

one’s life!” he said.

The Minister called on the security agencies to ensure that no one

precipitates chaos before, during and after the elections, and urged

Nigerians to come out in large numbers to peacefully exercise their

franchise.