Democratic Socialist Movement (DSM)
For Struggle, Solidarity and Socialism in Nigeria
DSM, PO Box 2225, Agege, Lagos
Come to DSM secretariat at 49 Charity Road New Oko-Oba, Abule-Egba, Lagos,
Call our national office on 0805 304 5953
18 February 2019
2019 ELECTION POSTPONEMENT IS CONDEMNABLE, UNJUSTIFIABLE AND RAISES QUESTIONS ON THE CAPACITY OF INEC TO CONDUCT A FREE, FAIR AND CREDIBLE ELECTION!
"The logistic problem for the postponement is a manifestation of the failure of successive capitalist governments"
SPN calls on NLC, TUC and ULC to join its effort to build a mass workers' political party on socialist programme
The Socialist Party of Nigeria (SPN) condemns without equivocation the announcement by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of the postponement of the 2019 general elections consisting of the Presidential/National Assembly elections and the Governorship/State legislative assembly elections from the originally scheduled dates of Saturday, February 16 and Saturday March 2, 2019, to Saturday 23 February, 2019 and 9 March, 2019 respectively.
The SPN through a statement signed by its Acting National chairperson and National Secretary, Comrade Abiodun Bamigboye and Comrade Chinedu Bosah respectively, and made available to the press explains how the announcement of the postponement made by INEC in the dead of the night while Nigerians were asleep did not only dash the hope of Nigerians who plan to participate in the voting process but also constitute a huge loss to millions of Nigeria as well the country at large. SPN is of the opinion that many people who have important functions scheduled for the new dates for the elections will have to cancel them. This is because the entire activities including vehicular movement across the country on the said dates will definitely be crippled. This will no doubt inflict ranges of pains and inconveniences, including financial losses, on Nigerians and this is asides the huge loss of resources the country might have incurred as well.
SPN further describes the postponement as unjustifiable. Given all of the years available for INEC for adequate preparation and the huge budget at its disposal, SPN frowns at this postponement as it maintains there is no basis for any logistic problem that could have made INEC to postpone the election. Therefore, it describes the postponement as a sheer sign of irresponsibility. This is reminiscent of the needless three and half years SPN spent in court while challenging its denial of registration by INEC and also various mismanagement of voter registration process by INEC including a lot of irregularities that characterised the process of the PVC collection across the country.
SPN identifies the current undemocratic way and manner through which INEC is constituted, run and controlled as one of the major causes of its inability to organise a free and fair election. The party thus calls for a truly democratic and independent INEC whereby its leadership will include the elected representatives of the working people under democratic control of working people. SPN believes that except INEC is organised in this democratic manner it will always be incapable of organising election that will free, fair, credible and devoid of avoidable itches.
INEC as it is currently constituted will always be robbed off of its independence and manipulated by the billionaire politicians in the pro-capitalist political parties – both APC and PDP. Its leadership is formed by the political appointees of the pro capitalist politicians. This is what makes it possible for pro capitalist politicians to have undue influence on the body. It is in the light of this that SPN believes that President Buhari-led government cannot be completely be exonerated from the INEC decision to postpone the 2019 election. Like INEC did in 2015 during Jonathan-led government, the postponement could also be a scheming and manipulations of the discredited and unpopular capitalist government of President Buhari-led government in connivance with INEC to win the election at all costs.
Even in a situation whereby INEC claim for the postponement of election is genuine, SPN raises its doubt over the INEC capacity to resolve the so called logistic problem within a week and proceeds to organise the election that will be free, fair and credible. But in case INEC resolves the logistic problem and proceeds with the election as rescheduled, the SPN is of the opinion that the process will be far from being free, fair and credible while the working people and poor masses will sadly have no fundamental thing to gain from whatever is the outcome of the election.
This is because, at the end of the day, both Buhari and Atiku including all other candidates of political parties with lesser influence subscribe to the same neo-liberal system of capitalism which is the fundamental cause of Nigeria's backwardness and mass poverty. It is the same capitalist system of exploitation and the neo-liberal policies which have been the guiding principle of all the successive governments across the country and responsible for all of societal problems including insecurity, logistic problem which is largely fuelled by the growing crises of rising youth violence and criminality across the country.
However, the SPN is of the opinion that beyond the struggle for the defence of right of Nigerian to free, fair and credible election is the need to dislodge all the capitalist government at all levels in the country and replace them with a socialist government. This is because only a government formed on a socialist programme that is capable to guarantee a full independence of INEC and end the prevailing trends of rising youth violence and criminality often fuelled by unfortunate level of neglect and complete abandonment suffered by different section of the country.
According to SPN, a socialist government will fundamentally be committed to the massive investment of public resources in areas of needs of the working people through a public works program in order to build more public schools, hospitals, roads and affordable housing etc., for the working masses as a means of gainfully engaging our teeming youths and taking them away from social vices.
Therefore, NLC, TUC, ULC and every change seeking Nigerians should join SPN and its effort to build a new mass working people's political party on a socialist programme which is capable of defeating all the mainstream political parties and the anti-poor, iniquitous capitalist system they embrace.