“Who will compensate me and others?”
Last Saturday, February 16, the chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, at about 2:45am, announced a shift in the general elections that was barely five hours away. The postponement has continued to attract reactions with some welcoming the decision as divine, while the majority are alarmed and sorely vexed. Nigerians in the FCT bare their minds in this interview:
MICHAEL E.O: What the INEC chairman has done is very disturbing. In a previous interview with the INEC chairman, Mahmood Yakubu, he noted that all preparations have been made. He further assured Nigerians that elections will not be postponed.
The same man at 3am, the morning of elections, announced that it has been postponed. Nigeria is a joke! The level of incompetence is nearly unbelievable.
So many people travelled to their hometowns to vote, corps members had to spend the night in terrible sleeping conditions, students had their exams postponed.
If this is a strategy by the current government, then our democracy is in trouble. INEC is meant to be an Independent body, but they are proving otherwise with this type of decision in such dire hour.
Everything proves too difficult in this country. Expressing individual rights to vote in a competent leader in Nigeria is the most difficult thing till date. Shouldn't we be ashamed of our system?
FAITH KOKO: INEC had Monday to Friday to give this announcement; why wait till Election Day? This is pure wickedness! Nigerians are upset about this. I am very ashamed to be a Nigerian at this point.
How about the international bodies that were scheduled to observe the elections? Is this a plan to make them leave? How about those that travelled to their hometowns? They will have to resume work on Monday, therefore making it impossible for them to travel again to vote next weekend. That is INEC’s intention isn't it? To discourage people from voting? Kai! I am pained!
MARVELOUS NDUIBISI: I weep for my country. Will Nigeria ever get better? I have been seeing pictures of corps members deployed by INEC, sleeping on the bare floor. As if that is not enough, they have gone ahead to cancel the elections?
The INEC chairman is indeed incompetent if he can allow the present government influence the decision to postpone the Presidential elections.
I am utterly disgusted by this action by INEC. Imagine that this announcement was made by 3am on the day of election? Why won't our neighbouring countries laugh at us? And tomorrow Nigerians will be lauded as giants of Africa. This government plus INEC are giants of incompetence.
SEGUN OLUKOLA: Those at the top know more than us. We will only wait for the outcome. Anytime INEC wants to conduct the election we will still turn out to cast our votes. But they have disrupted everyone's plans in Nigeria and that is not good.
BENJAMIN OHA: I’m short for words. I haven't recovered from the shock. It has never been done that hours before the election, the exercise will be postponed. What happened in 2011 was an incident of insecurity as excuse in the North East.
It is sad because it shows we are still undemocratic. We are still so unprofessional that in this age we cannot conduct an election. This a huge disappointment. How are we going to be viewed by the international community? You tried by making me to talk because am still unclear with INEC's decision.
TEMPLE EZE: I am very annoyed with the INEC over this postponement. I had to sleep in my shop because my polling unit far from where I stay. Unfortunately for me, I got a call by 2:00am that election was postponed. We are the giant of Africa and this should not be heard because even Kenya won't react like this. We are all educated. They should tell us the truth about their leanings in this matter. They have mismanaged our time.