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CNPP Threatens To Sanction Political Parties That Rejects INEC Card Reader Device

FROM IGNATIUS OKPARA, Enugu – Conference of Nigerian Political Parties (CNPP) says it may be forced to withdraw the membership of political parties that engage in unethical and undemocratic agitation, such as rejection of the INEC Magnetic Card Reader MCR.

The group, which serves as an umbrella association of all political parties in Nigeria, said it is unequivocally in support of the use of Magnetic Card Reader for accreditation of voters in the 2015 general elections.

A statement signed by the National Publicity Secretary of CNPP, Mr Osita Okechukwu, made available to African Examiner in Enugu Tuesday, said “it takes exception to political parties that are wittingly or unwittingly threatening the survival of our fledgling democracy by opposing the deployment of Magnetic Card Reader.

“In sum, the CNPP will eject membership of political parties that engage in unethical and undemocratic agitation and embark on Mass Action, if either Jega is removed, Card Reader deleted or even the Temporary Voters Card (is) added for accreditation,” it said.

While assessing the performance of the Card Reader machine deployed on test- run last weekend, CNPP said with exception of few lapses recorded, the exercise went smoothly.

“The mock test of the Magnetic Card Reader, by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), even if the picture is the only identification matrix; has further emboldened and reinforced our resolve to adopt the device as the best device to avoid mangling and manipulating the electoral process.

“INEC should take note of the few lapses noted and improve on the device, so as to engender free, fair and transparent election. This will put paid to those who want would want to repeat in ‘Medical School’ after failing.

“We are making this declaration because in the absence of genuine reason, we adopt a device which has been used to conduct free, fair and transparent elections in many countries like the US, UK, Brazil, Ghana, and the 2014 Indian general elections, an election where 600 million Indian voters voted seamlessly.

“It is regrettable that those who few years back, declared that telephone is not for the Nigerian poor are behind the call for the rejection of Magnetic Card Reader technology for accreditation of Nigerian Voters.

“We had thought that the lesson today that both the groundnut seller and the rich are using telephone, is enough lesson on adaptation of new technology to advance our electoral process which in the past was marred by irregularities.

“CNPP concur with the valid evidence that the use of Magnetic Card Reader for accreditation of voters will minimize if not eradicate ballot- box snatching, dumb printing of ballot papers and snatching of result sheets.

“We are therefore at a loss why the largest party in Africa – Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) – a party that has ruled our dear country for the last sixteen years is jittery, and enveloped with hysteria over the use of the Magnetic Card Reader to advance our electoral process.

“To worsen matters, the PDP is desperately recruiting other political parties in this ignoble, undemocratic and unpatriotic onslaught on the nerve of our fledgling democracy.”



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