The Centre for Democracy and Developmental Research (CDCR) has criticised a US report which alleged voter intimidation by security agents during last year’s general elections.
According to CDCR, the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices in Nigeria released by the US Department of State was fabricated and full of lies.
Speaking at a press conference on Wednesday in Abuja, President African Affairs, Dr. Johnson Bewaji wondered how the US Department of State arrived at this conclusion, especially after the polls was adjudged as one of the most transparent by international observers that traversed the length and breadth of the country.
The Centre recalled the patriotic role played by the Nigerian Army, Department of State Service and other security agencies during the exercise; how it maintained sanity and integrity during the entire process.
CDCR, though, believes that this may be another grand plot by the opposition to discredit the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
After a careful analysis of the issues raised, the centre, however, the Centre concluded that the Report on Human Rights Practices in Nigeria is absolute falsehood and a figment of the author’s imagination.
The Centre for Democracy and Developmental Research, therefore, advised Nigerians to ignore the report and others in this same direction aimed to paint the current government in bad light.
Read full statement below:
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research is holding this press conference to put issues in proper perspective with regards to the allegations against the Nigeria Security Agencies by the US Department of State in its 2019 Country Report on Human Rights Practices in Nigeria.
The report, amongst other things, alleged that there were high incidences of voters’ intimidation by Nigerian security agents, including the Department of State Services and the Nigerian Army, during the 2019 general elections. The report also alleged that these supposed acts fuelled the impression that the Nigerian Army worked for the success of the ruling All Progressives Congress during the general elections.
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research as a result of this wish to state that both local and international observers closely monitored the 2019 general elections in Nigeria and the Centre for Democracy and Development Research was amongst the accredited international observer groups that traversed the length and breadth of the country during and after the elections.
It is succinct to state that during the elections, the role of the Nigerian Army was invaluable in the sense that it was able to maintain sanity and integrity during the entire election period by ensuring that the activities of political thugs and others do not hamper the credibility of the elections in any way.
We also wish to state that the officers and men of the Nigerian Army indeed saved the day in the areas that were prone to violence. This undeniable fact was highlighted in our interim report after the elections, and we are consequently bewildered as to the source of the information of the US Department of State in its 2019 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices in Nigeria.
The content of the report is indeed questionable and calls for concerns from all critical stakeholders because it is highly misleading and not an accurate representation of the facts on the ground with regards to the credibility of the 2019 general elections in Nigeria.
The Centre for Democracy and Developmental Research sees this attempt as futile and a deliberate attempt to question the authenticity of the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari at the 2019 general elections.
It is indeed worrisome to state that the content of the US Department of State 2019 Country Report on Human Rights Practices in Nigeria strategically shares semblance with the narrative pushed forward by the opposition party that lost out at the elections.
This statement of fact can be further buttressed when the issues canvassed in the 2019 Country Report are put side by side with the plot by the opposition party to discredit the outcome of the elections before the international community.
We are therefore constrained to believe that the possibility of the US Department of State acting out the script of the opposition in Nigeria is very high and of reasonable suspicion, because its content and arguments are directed at the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research wishes to state that there was never a time it observed during the elections incidences of voters intimidation by the security agencies. There is also no basis for the unsubstantiated assumption that the Nigerian Army worked for the success of the ruling All Progressive Party at the elections.
We indeed wish to state that the reverse was the case as it still appears some foreign interests are still angry that the military and other security agencies stood against the underground plot by Nigeria’s opposition and their external collaborators to destabilize Nigeria.
This is on the heels that the underground plot was to ensure that war broke out after the exercise in their attempt to seize power through the back door.
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research after a careful analysis of the issues raised and the elections it observed wishes to state that the 2019 Report on Human Rights Practices in Nigeria is absolute falsehood and, at best, a figment of the imagination of the authors.
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research wishes to inform members of the general public that indeed the plot to discredit the electoral victory of President Muhammadu Buhari is still rife and taken the international dimension with the 2019 Human Rights Practices Report in Nigeria as that example of that international dimension.
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research wishes to advise members of the unsuspecting general public to form the habit of disregarding reports of such nature as their motives are not always in the interest of Nigeria, but that of those that have elected to ensure that Nigeria disintegrates.
The Centre for Democracy and Development Research thanks all present and wishes to state that it shall be making public the outcome of its observations of the 2019 general elections for the consumption of the generality of the public.
Thank you for your time.