Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Minister of Information and Culture, has accused the two main opposition parties, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and Labour Party (LP) of being fraudulent over their claims that the 2023 presidential election was marred by rigging.
Mohammed in a statement he issued on Sunday, urged the opposition to stop their endless griping over the 2023 presidential election which they lost woefully.
He maintained that President Muhammadu Buhari’s analysis of the reasons for the opposition’s loss in the 2023 elections was incontrovertible.
He said the opposition lost the election because of their overconfidence and complacency.
He said the President deserves nothing but accolades for delivering undoubtedly the best election in Nigeria’s history, adding that ”the tempestuous but predictable reaction to the President’s comments by the opposition has shown them for what they are: shameless sore losers”.
”President Muhammadu Buhari lived up to his billing by delivering a free, fair and credible election, and his legacy is assured. The President would rather lose his state and many of his party’s strongholds than tamper with the fidelity of the election, and that is why he provided a level playing field for all parties,” Mohammed said.
Mohammed claimed the opposition’s overconfidence going into the election stemmed in part, from the blitzkrieg of social media propaganda as well as faulty and procured opinion polls, which were meant to hoodwink their foreign backers and a section of the international media into uncritically reporting that they were coasting home to victory when they were indeed heading into the ravine of defeat.
The Minister said the presidential candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, won the presidential election fair and square, clinching the majority of the votes cast and surpassing the constitutionally-stipulated 25% of votes cast in each of at least two-thirds of all the states in the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory.
”Going by the results, none of the opposition parties met any of the conditions stipulated for winning the presidential election. They didn’t even come close, in spite of their pre-election grandstanding.
”They (the opposition) keep leaning on some international observers to justify their fraudulent claim that the election was rigged. They conveniently forgot what Ambassador Johnnie Carson, the revered US diplomat who co-led the National Democratic Institute (NDI) and International Republican Institute (IRI) International Election Observation Mission to Nigeria said: that the APC candidate undoubtedly won the polls.
”They also forgot that the African Union Election Observation Mission to Nigeria said the atmosphere was generally calm and peaceful in 95% of the polling units visited,” he said, adding that it is on the strength of these reports that many nations, including the US and the UK, wasted no time in congratulating the victorious APC Presidential Candidate.
Mohammed slammed the opposition for continuously seeking to mislead the world by clutching at the weak straw that results were not immediately uploaded onto the IReV Portal, as if the portal has any role to play in the collation of results.
”The opposition’s insinuation that the failure to immediately upload the result of the presidential election onto IReV affected the credibility of the election is a fraud. It is an act of blackmail and deceit by desperate individuals.
”The opposition Labour Party, in particular, will go down in the history books as the first-ever distant third-place finisher in a presidential election anywhere to have bold-facedly claimed victory,” he added.