The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has cautioned the Chief of Army Staff, Lt. Gen. Tukur Buratai, to refrain from support of any political party ahead of upcoming polls.
The PDP said “Gen. Buratai’s allusion to its presidential candidate, Atiku Abubakar, as well as his threats to officers and ranks to execute the order by President Muhammadu Buhari to participate in the electoral process is an aberration of our laws and a recipe for crisis”.
Atiku Abubakar spoke on the side of the law and wishes of Nigerians and cannot be intimidated by anybody no matter how highly placed. PDP spokesperson, Kola Ologbondiyan in a statement counseled Gen. Buratai to note that the loyalty of the military is to the state and that the President lacks the powers, under our laws, to deploy soldiers for the conduct of elections.
Other politicians and stakeholders were also asked concern their opinion on buhari deploying the military, and some of notable responses was – “Deploying the military is a move to rig the elections, we have the police force whose duties are to protect life and property of citizens and individuals
“Deploying the military could cause us to suffer the same crisis VENEZUELA is suffering today, it simply points that the ruling party are making serious moves to rig the elections.
PDP spokesman also said “our party urges Gen Buratai to concentrate on his very demanding assignment of protecting the territorial integrity of our nation and ending insurgency rather than dabbling into partisan politics at the risk of our national cohesion. “It is imperative to state that by trying to drag the military to participate in the February 23 Presidential elections, President Buhari plots to suspend our constitution, assume the position of an emperor, trigger unrest, subvert our electoral process and derail our democracy.
The party directed President Buhari to the judgment of the Federal High Court, Lagos on March 23, 2015, wherein the court, presided over by Justice Ibrahim Buba, directly outlawed the deployment of troops in the conduct of elections in our country.
The PDP asked the President to also avail himself of the subsisting judgment of the Court of Appeal, which on February 15, 2015, held that the President has no powers to deploy soldiers in the conduct of elections.
It further counselled President Buhari and Gen. Buratai to end their rationalizing of military option, as the courts have summarily dismissed their arguments that soldiers are needed to guarantee peaceful elections.