As Nigerians are still faced with hardship owing to naira scarcity, as a result of the monetary policy introduced by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Anambra State Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Okelo Madukaife, has expressed confidence that the electorate won’t be dispirited to cast their votes for the ruling party at the polls on Saturday.
Madukaife also dismissed insinuations that the challenges being faced by the citizens will cause voter apathy on the election day.
Nigeria will hold its long awaited general election on Saturday, February 25, 2023, for Presidential and National Assembly elections while elections for 28 of the 36 governorships and State Houses of Assembly will follow on Saturday, March 11.
The forthcoming elections which marks Nigeria’s 24 years of uninterrupted democracy, the longest span in the country’s history, will serve as a critical transfer of power, as President Muhammadu Buhari would have served two mandates and is ineligible to seek another four-year term.
Madukaife, in an exclusive interview with INFORMATION NIGERIA revealed that the socio-economic situation would rather than deter Nigerians, create awareness and spur citizens to vote.
His words: “No, I don’t think it will discourage them, it will create more awareness, people will have to vote and make their decisions one way or the other based on their understanding of what they think is happening.
“Their confidence can be gained through awareness because those who were normally nonchalant, will not now be neutral because they understand the issues. Most of the polling units are within walking distances except for those who have not transferred their votes and those who don’t want to vote.”
He maintained that the cabals who planned the redesign policy to mislead Buhari in a bid to scuttle the elections have failed because the criticisms and backlash they received have equally prompted citizens to be on alert and in the know.
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“Those who timed this policy without readiness, without preparation, and misadvised the president along that line, added that as a target but I doubt it will succeed because the counter has been equally effective. People are now a little bit more conscious, people now understand that when you’re talking about monetary policies, in the way it’s being conceived, it goes beyond CBN, because CBN is not in charge of network infrastructure.
“The CBN is not in charge of the communication networks, because if you ask somebody not to use cash, the next alternative is e-transaction, which has a regulatory body, that is Nigerian Communications Commission. If you conceive a policy in secrecy without buying into the confidence of other stake holders, so that they can share in the objectives of the program, then you have designed it to fail,” he said.
The spokesman also added that the public tension is not farfetched from the fact that the CBN governor, Godwin Emefiele, who introduced the policy was once in the race to become president under the ruling APC, hence, the understanding Nigerians have, will lead them to their polling units.
“Despite all these things that happen in the corporate world, somebody who is head of that policy making, getting involved in the partisan politics of trying to become Nigerian president, that’s at the root of the perception you’re seeing and the aspect that’s causing the tension.
“If it was just that there were difficulties in the implementation, it could have been achieved one way or the other, but people are understanding it in a diffferent way, that’s why I’m saying it will not affect any turn,” he said.
Several States across the country including Anambra have witnessed series of protests owing to the naira scarcity.
Banks around around Main Market, Onitsha and in Nnewi had been shut to customers as a result of this.
via: Information Nigeria
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