Biafra: The Folly Of Boycotting 2019 Elections
Two reasons why 2019 election boycott in Biafraland will be ineffectual and incapable of precipitating a referendum
In recent times, there have been ignorant calls and ill-advised write-ups from certain quarters suggesting that election boycott in Biafraland, especially the upcoming 2019 Federal elections, will precipitate a Referendum.
Nothing can be farther from the truth. There are two key reasons why election boycott in Biafraland will be ineffectual and incapable of triggering a Referendum, be it internal or external Referendum.
Let me start by informing these largely misinformed writers and certain group leaders that, as bad and as fraudulent as it is, Nigeria has a Constitution and the elections are mandated by that fraudulent Constitution.
Even the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is established by Section-153(1f) and empowered in Schedule-3 (Part-1 Section-14) of the same fraudulent Constitution.
In deciding the winner of an election, both the Nigerian Constitution and Section-69 of INEC Electoral Act stipulate the use of only actual votes cast and NOT the number of supposed voters who were registered and which includes those who boycotted the election.
For multiple candidates contesting for a particular office, Sections 134(2) & 179(2) state that the highest number of votes cast plus attaining 25% of the votes cast in two-thirds of the areas covered by that political office would be used to determine the winner.
For instance, to declare a winner of presidential election, a candidate must have the highest number of votes cast and he or she must have 25% of the votes cast in 24 states plus 25% of the votes cast in the Federal Capital Territory Abuja (FCT).
The implications of these Constitutional provisions are that a winner will be declared in every election as long as the provisions are met, based on the actual votes cast, irrespective of the voters’ turnout.
With all amount of certainty, I declare here that it is absolutely impossible to achieve 100% boycott of elections in Biafraland except if the Armed Forces and Security Agencies of Nigeria are violently overwhelmed, overpowered, and subdued on the days of elections.
Any organization that professes peaceful approach to self-determination pursuit and which doesn’t even have the military might to match the Armed Forces and Security Agencies of Nigeria can never enforce 100% boycott of elections in any part of Nigeria, Biafraland inclusive.
Meaning that even if 0.1% of the registered voters actually voted, that number will be used to determine and declare a winner for the office under contest.
Considering the Constitutional provisions in Section-134(2), even if there is 100% boycott of elections in Biafraland, it will not affect the election of a President. This is because a winning candidate requires 25% votes in 24 states plus the FCT.
The entire Biafraland which comprises mainly Southeast and South-south is made up of eleven states which, when removed, still gives a total of 25 states and is more than what a winning candidate requires.
Also, the boycott of elections in Biafraland will not affect the election of National Assembly members who are contesting in states outside of Biafraland and we must understand that the total number of these National Assembly members is enough to form a quorum to conduct Federal Legislative duties.
In addition, if there is 100% boycott of elections in Biafraland because of “violently overwhelming of Nigeria’s Armed Forces and Security Agencies”, it will trigger the sitting President to invoke his Constitutional powers as stipulated in Section-305(3f) which authorizes him to declare a state of emergency on the states within Biafraland under the excuse that there is a threat to the existence of Nigerian Federation.
Meaning that instead of a Referendum, Biafraland will be under a military lockdown till further notice.
In conclusion, it is foolhardy to peddle the notion that election boycott will trigger a Referendum of any sort.
On the contrary, election boycott will have zero impact on the declaration of candidates as winners for various offices because such declarations are based on actual votes cast and not on the total number of registered voters on record.
Achieving 100% election boycott in Biafraland is impossible unless the Nigerian Armed Forces and Security Agencies are violently subdued.
The only option that can trigger a Referendum is the “multi-regional” truncation of the elections prior to the election dates. This will result in Constitutional logjam which will automatically and simultaneously precipitate both internal and external Referendum.
Biafrans who are genuinely interested in the self-determination and liberation of their land through the Referendum route must liaise with other self-determination collectives such as the Lower Niger Congress (LNC) with a view to collaborating “multi-regionally” and keying into pre-existing frameworks and roadmap.
Boycotting the 2019 Federal elections conducted under the fraudulent 1999 Constitution is a pure waste of time and merely playing to the gallery by clueless and terribly disorganized entities and megalomaniacs.
Written by Dr. Clifford Chukwuemeka Iroanya, Houston-Texas, USA