By Aisha Abdulrazaq
A faction of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), in Kogi State led by Senator Dino Melaye, has called on Governor Yahaya Bello to resign for registering twice for permanent voter card, describing it as “executive recklessness and impunity”.
Senator Dino Melaye, who is representing Kogi West, made the call on behalf of the party at a news briefing in Abuja on Friday. Kogi APC chairman, Hadi Ametuo, agreed with Mr. Melaye, adding that it was the position of the party.
The call for the governor’s resignation came on the heels of a statement from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), on Thursday in Abuja, accusing Mr. Bello of double registration for Permanent Voter Card in contravention of the Electoral Act.
The statement noted that Mr. Bello had his first registration on Jan. 30, 2011 in Wuse Zone 4, Abuja and the second registration on Tuesday, May 23, at the Government House, Lokoja.
Mr. Melaye said the people of Kogi State and the party were dissociating themselves from the act and called on Mr. Bello to resign immediately or risk impeachment.
“We are saying that as stakeholders in Kogi politics and the All Progressives Congress (APC), we condemn in its entirety the fraudulent behaviour of Yahaya Bello, the executive governor of Kogi State.
“This criminal behaviour has embarrassed the people of Kogi state and the APC. We dissociate ourselves from this criminal behaviour.
“Kogi people are responsible people and we expect to have a responsible governor. As at the time he was contesting that election, it showed that he was not a registered voter in Kogi state.
“Since he knew he was not registered in the state, why did he in the first place accept the candidacy of the party?
“So, on this note, we are calling immediately for the resignation of the governor because a criminal awaiting trial cannot be representing the people of Kogi state as governor.
“If he has integrity, he should honourably resign and if the governor refuses to resign, we are going to mobilise our members in the House of Assembly to start an impeachment process against him.
“We will do this because we have a valid point as expressed by INEC,’’ he said.
Melaye further said that besides the move for impeachment, Kogi citizens would be mobilized to stage peaceful protest in strategic locations across the country should he refuse to resign.
He said the people would be mobilized to INEC’s head office, the national secretariat of APC and strategic locations in Lokoja to protest, adding that power belonged to the people.
“Our people are dying. This 419 entrant into government should cease and we are going to follow it to the letter.
“This will give the APC electoral deficit in 2019 if we did not separate Yahaya Bello from the APC.
“We will not allow him to destroy this platform because it is still useful to many of us because we want to use it in 2019.
“He must be honourable enough to step aside because he who must go to equity must come with clean hands.
“INEC also said Government House Lokoja is not a designated local government registration centre, meaning the governor must have taken INEC to Government House either through corruption, coercion or through diabolic means,” he said.
The chairman of APC in Kogi, Hadi Ametuo, agreed with Mr. Melaye, adding that it was the position of the party.
He said, “We know the law and INEC says it is criminal. We will abide by what Melaye has just said. That is our position.’’
Source: Premium times