Monday, November 9, 2015 4:36 pm
By Ayorinde Oluokun.
President Muhammadu Buhari said on Monday that adequate punishments must be meted out for all forms of electoral offences instead of the recent practice of mere cancellation of the elections or the result.
The President said this after swearing-in the new Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Mahmood Yakubu and five National Commissioners of INEC in the Council Chambers of the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
The event was attended by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, Senate President, Bukola Saraki and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Yakubu Dogara.
“It is not just enough for an election to be cancelled and a new one ordered. It would be much better if all whose actions or inactions led to the cancellation of such election to be investigated and if culpable prosecuted whether they are individuals, candidates or party agents, institutions such as political party, electoral body, or public officers as electoral staff or security agents.
Similarly, perpetrators of electoral violence and thuggery should not be spared. Unless our system stops covering up all forms of electoral malpractices we can hardly get it right. No system endures with impunity.”
The President also lamented that a situation in which a ruling party in all the states of the federation usually wins all the local government elections does not augur well for the country, especially if it is not in tune with the wishes of the people. The President therefore promised to take the campaign for free and fair elections to the states
The Commissioners who were sworn in included Amina Zakari, Solomon Adedeji Soyebi, Prof. Antonia Taiye Okoosi-Simbine, Dr. Muhammed Mustafa Lecky and Alhaji Baba Shettima Arfo.