MasterwebNews 6/4/16 - The Return Of Iwu`s Dark Era In INEC: Before The Commission Sets Anambra, Imo And Rivers States On Fire

[ Masterweb Reports: Intersociety reports ] - (Onitsha Nigeria, 1st of April 2016)-The leaderships of Southeast Based Coalition of Human Rights Organizations (SBCHROs), comprising: International Society for Civil Liberties & the Rule of Law (Intersociety), Anambra State Branch of the Civil Liberties Organization (CLO), Center for Human Rights & Peace Advocacy (CHRPA), Human Rights Club (a project of LRRDC)(HRC), Forum for Justice, Equity & Defense of Human Rights (FJEDHR), Society Advocacy Watch Project (SPAW), Anambra Human Rights Forum (AHRF), Southeast Good Governance Forum (SGGF), International Solidarity for Peace & Human Rights Initiative (ITERSOLIDARITY) and Igbo Ekunie Initiative (pan Igbo rights advocacy group) are deeply concerned and dismay over continuing rigmarole of the INEC with respect to non conduct and non conclusion of the outstanding re-run elections in  the Imo North and the Anambra Central Senatorial Districts as well as other affected areas in Rivers State; one year or 12 months after Nigeria’s federal legislative polls were held. The Nigeria’s Federal Legislative polls were held on 28th of March 2015. The macabre dance of the Commission with respect to recent turbulent and inconclusive legislative rerun polls in Rivers State also worries and saddens us. The source of powers of the Commission to conceal and possibly doctor election results weeks after they were conducted, before releasing them in bits as it is the case in Rivers State remains surprising and confusing, because we are not aware of any such provisions in the INEC Establishment Act of 2004, the Electoral Act of 2010 and the 1999 Constitution.
 

 

 

 

By this strange and brigand act of the Commission, the country’s democracy is endangered and the universally entrenched culture of one-person-one-vote rapaciously threatened. It is our deep fear that Nigeria may most likely have returned to “Iwu’s dark era” in the country’s electoral industry and midwifery when goats, cows, plants, dead persons’ names, house chattels and fixtures and other inanimate objects were registered and encoded in the country’s National Register of Voters as “registered voters”; when electoral results were being written on dining tables, in shrines and at altars of occultists. Unless INEC is urgently called to order to refrain from its present chaotic approach, otherwise the Commission may most likely set Anambra, Imo and Rivers States on fire.
 

 

 

 

Abuse& Misrepresentation of Supreme Court Verdict on Submission of Party Candidates’ List to INEC: In Anambra State, INEC further appears to be tinkering, experimenting with, and  misrepresenting the recent judgment of the Supreme Court with respect to the competence of the National Working Committee of the PDP (and by extension other such committees in other registered political parties in Nigeria including APC and APGA) in the submission to INEC of the list of its candidates in any election in Nigeria. The Supreme Court has in its “explanatory notes” following its earlier majority judgment given on 29th of January 2016, clearly maintained that “while the Ejike Ogubego-led State Executive of Anambra PDP is the authentic State executive of the Party, but the National Working Committee of the Party remains the sole or only party organ entrusted with the responsibility of submitting the list of the Party’s nominated candidates for any election in Nigeria”. We understand that the Commission is reportedly under pressure from forces at top to read a different meaning into the Apex Court verdict (i.e. revocation of certificates of return of serving members of the National Assembly) and possibly use it to create further confusion and plant anarchy into Anambra State politics. 
 
 
The aim, reportedly, is to foist “Amaechi electoral saga” on the affected constituencies; whereby, for instance, those who did not participate in the election proper, will be issued with new certificates of return, in return for mass defection to the party from which reported pressures on INEC are being mounted. The improperly constituted Independent National Electoral Commission under Prof Mahmud Yakubu seems to have become an outlaw since its improper constitution in June 2015. By Section 287 (1) of the 1999 Constitution, “the decisions of the Supreme Court (are final) and shall be enforced in any part of the Federation by all authorities and persons and by courts with subordinate jurisdictions to that of the Supreme Court”. The Commission, in this respect, among other unfolding dramas, has moved from “disinterested and unbiased electoral football referee” to “interested, biased and electoral football player”.
 

 

 

 

INEC Rigmarole & Partisanship Over Rivers State Rerun Polls: Till date, INEC is unable to conclude the outstanding legislative rerun polls in Rivers State and has further floundered or found itself in a state of confusion by seizing, concealing and possibly doctoring before releasing results of those it recently conducted under turbulent and controversial circumstances. The latest corporate malicious act of the Commission is unknown to any electoral law in Nigeria and the 1999 Constitution. Rivers State, which is a strategic State and partner in Nigeria’s social, economic and political landscape; by virtue of its oil-wealth contributions to the Federation and the State’s socio-political fragility, has been denied quality and popular representation in the Senate of the Federal Republic of Nigeria till date, on account of judicial sacking of its three former Senators: Osinakachukwu Idoezu (Rivers South-West), John Olaka-Nwogo (Rivers South-East) and George Thompson Sekibo (Rivers East, who was sacked by same Appellate Court on 10th of December 2015). The inability and failure of INEC to conclude rerun polls into the three vacant offices as ordered by the Court of Appeal, Abuja Division since 10th and 11th of December 2015 as well as other outstanding Federal and State legislative rerun polls in the State has continued to sadden our heart and make further mockery of the Commission. The 90 days court orders within which to conduct and conclude the rerun polls under reference expired since 10th and 11th of March 2016; yet the Commission has not fully announced the winners of those it conducted particularly t
 
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