Rose Ejembi, Makurdi
The governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Benue State, Emmanuel Jime, has described as devastating, the announced postponement of the general elections by one week.
Jime who spoke with newsmen in his Makurdi residence on Saturday morning said he initially did not believe the news when it started popping up on the social media channel, tongue-lashed the electoral umpire for failing Nigerians at the last minute.
“This is really very devastating. I have to say that for me, this is really a very disappointing outing. We have worked very hard to make sure that we are delivering on this democracy. We should be improving on how we are delivering on our elections and the processes of elections as well.
He noted that Nigeria as a nation should have learnt from its past mistakes and improved on its leverage process instead of comparing the past with the present.
“I’ve heard a couple of comments and people saying this happened in 2011 and again in 2015. I totally disagree with this attitude of looking to the past to justify why we are failing. If anything, the past should actually be a lesson and we should be able to learn the lesson of what may have gone wrong in the past so that we can improve on the democratic edition.
“But I think as far as elections and the process that lead to the election are concerned, it seems to me that we are really crawling; we are not as fast as we should. And this to say the least, is very devastating to me as a person and I think most certainly for the whole concept of the beauty of the democratic edition. I’m short for words.
“This is the first time in a long time that I have to say that I can’t find the right word to describe exactly how I feel about this. We have to keep in mind that a lot has gone into this and it has taken a lot of toll on the political parties, and even the electoral umpire itself.
“I watched very sad video this morning of corpers sleeping on bare floor, some in buses. This is really devastating and we should never be seeing this sort of thing in the 21st century Nigeria because we will make ourselves laughing stock as far as the international community is concerned.
“If we can’t deliver a simple thing as a circle of elections, one which allows us room to prepare every four years, assuming we had these elections today, that means four years from now, we will have another election. So, the process should really work in a way that we do not have this kind of thing. This is very bad.”
Jime who lamented the human and capital preparations that had gone into the election process, however, assured that the postponement would not affect his chances of winning even as he called on all his supporters to remain calm.