The Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, on Monday stated that INEC has been dragged to court 400 times in January 2016 to December 2017 while delivering his speech in a public hearing on “A Bill for an Act to Establish the National Electoral Offences Commission and for related matters.”
Speaking after the former Chairman, Senate Committee on INEC, Senator Abubakar Kyari, remark, the INEC boss said, “We monitor political campaign, conduct civic education, despite the constraints confronting us.
“In 2015 general election, INEC has been dragged to court 680 times. January 2016 to December 2017, we have been dragged 400 times. That is over 1,000 litigation since 2015.”
“We have prosecuted Electoral offenders. Several case file from the Nigerian Police have been considered and we have succeeded in prosecuting 160 offenders,” He said.
Prof Yakubu also said that appointment of Secretary to the Commission should be made by the Commission (INEC) itself and not by the president.
“The electoral offences Bill seeks to Establish an independent commission and will address issues relating to the coordination of laws.”
The INEC Chairman noted that the Bill will ensure perpetrators of electoral offences are punished and will also ensure INEC became focus as an election board.
Speaking in the same vein, the representative of the Chief of Army Staff, Maj Gen Angbazo said the Electoral Offences Bill is a welcome development to help improve democracy and the electoral process.