Saraki on poll shift: Nigerians will definitely punish this government

Senate President Bukola has blamed the postponement of the presidential and national assembly polls on the alleged incompetence of the government.

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) announced the postponement in the wee hours of Saturday.

Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman, had explained that the logistics challenge caused the inability of the commission to proceed with the electoral process.

Commenting on the development, Saraki, in a statement, described the timing of the deferment as “sad”.

He advised INEC to focus on ensuring that the elections hold on the new scheduled date.

He also urged Nigerians to shun apathy, calling on them to come out en masse to vote during the elections.

“Waiting till just a few hours to the commencement of voting before announcing the postponement of elections is extremely sad. Nobody can quantify the difficulty that this will bring to millions of Nigerians across the nation,” Saraki said.

“I empathize with youth corps members who have been relocated from their places of primary assignment to assist with the conduct of the elections. My thoughts also go out to workers and civil servants who left their bases to go and vote in their hometowns.

“I also sympathize with millions of ordinary Nigerian traders whose businesses were suspended because of the no-movement order. The costs of this postponement are incalculable.

“I want to appeal to Nigerians not to be deterred, discouraged or disappointed. You must all continue to be strong and determined to cast your votes on February 23rd.

“My appeal to you is this: Next Saturday, forget the current setback and troop out en masse to vote. Not voting because of the postponement should not be an option.

“At this point, government and INEC should focus on the way forward in order to ensure that the elections take place as rescheduled. They should move swiftly to smoothen all the rough edges that currently exist.

“INEC must ensure that we do not have a repeat of what happened today. As I have always reiterated, the 2019 elections should be a clear improvement on that of 2015

“Nigerians are now wiser. They will definitely punish this government that has displayed incompetence, lack of capacity and foresight and vote for the team that will Get Nigeria Working Again

“I urge you all: remain resolute and come out en masse next Saturday to vote for the PDP. The Atiku-Obi ticket have the momentum on its side. This postponement will not slow us down.”