Nigeria’s leading party APC condemns U.S. election saga

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By Emmanuel Mogbede

Abuja, Jan. 9, 2021 APC has described events that followed the United States of America’s November 2020 presidential election and President Donald Trump’s refusal to concede defeat as condemnable.

The APC said this in a statement signed by Sen. John Akpanudoedehe, Secretary of its Caretaker and Extra-ordinary Convention Planning Committee on Saturday in Abuja, while reacting to the development.

“The events of the past 72 hours in the U.S. are, to say the least, condemnable. Over time, elections in the U.S. had been used as a touchstone for elections in other democracies.

“It is settled that strong institutions are fundamental to the sustenance of democracies.

“However, this U.S. election saga strongly underscores the fact that the integrity of the country’s leader essentially complements the workings of these institutions.

“President Muhammadu Buhari contested and lost elections a couple of times and followed the process through to the Supreme Court on all accounts. This is an outstanding credential of a true democrat,’’ he said.

Akpanudoedehe noted that upon ultimately gaining electoral victory in 2015, the APC-led administration had carried out fundamental reforms to strengthen institutions.

This, he said, included non-interference in the functions of INEC among others.

He recalled that the APC contested elections; won some, lost some without splitting hairs, adding that at some point, it lost more than five states to the PDP, yet allowed democracy to prevail.

Akpanudoedehe added that the APC had remained resolute in its belief that in every electoral contest, popular will must prevail.

This according to him is a far cry from the days of the do-or-die politics where civilians took control of security apparatus to subvert the people’s will and determine the outcome of elections.

He stressed that electoral reform was a core plank of the programs of the APC-led administration and a legacy that President Buhari had promised to bequeath to Nigerians.

He said the Buhari-led administration had brought about several institutional reforms including granting autonomy to Local Governments Councils.

He said the signing into law by President Buhari in May 2020 of the Executive Order No. 10 of 2020 for the implementation of financial autonomy of state legislatures and judiciaries and other related matters was a bold statement on institutional reforms.

“The Petroleum industry reforms particularly the deregulation of the oil and gas downstream sector is also worthy of mention,’’ he stated.

“We urge political parties, especially governors to show bi-partisanship in supporting all sectorial reforms being initiated by President Buhari for the benefit of Nigerians,’’ Akpanudoedehe added.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Twitter suspended President Donald Trump’s account on Friday citing risk of further incitement of violence in the United States.

The president’s account, with 88 million followers, was initially banned for 12 hours on Wednesday due to severe violations of Twitter Civic Integrity policy.

This, was after Trump used the platform to condemn Vice-President Mike Pence as his supporters stormed the Capitol.

“After close review of recent Tweets from the @realdonaldtrump account and the context around them, we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence,’’ the company said in a tweet.

Trump’s attempts to tweet from other social media accounts were also blocked. At one point, he was tweeting from his campaign account, but that was promptly suspended.

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