Vanguard (Lagos)

16 February 2011

Nigeria: PDP Threatens to Drag INEC to Court

Ado — Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, in Ekiti State has threatened to take a legal action against the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, if the electoral body fails to delete names of the two candidates presented as dummy names to it by the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, in Ekiti Central Senatorial District and Ekiti Central Federal Constituency 1 in the just concluded primaries.

The party described the submission of names of Senator Kolawole Olagunju and Mr. Bayo Idowu, as Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, candidates for the Central Senatorial district and Ekiti Central Federal Constituency I respectively as fraudulent.

The party urged INEC to "delete their names or those of anyone that may have been used to substitute them from the list of candidates for the April general elections."

The PDP, in a petition titled; "Fraudulent submission of list of candidates by the Action Congress of Nigeria in Ekiti State" said nomination of both Kolawole and Mr. Idowu contravened Section 87 (1) of the Electoral Act 2010 as they never contested any primary, either direct or indirect.

Threatening legal action against INEC, the PDP said; "However, should INEC in the face of all these infractions of the Electoral Act 2010 still go ahead to include the names of Senator Kolawole and Mr Idowu or any other person(s) as candidates for the ACN for Ekiti Central Senatorial district and Ekiti Central Federal Constituency I, we shall not hesitate to take legal actions against the persons involved and the commission in line with Section 31 (5 & 6) and Section 1(b) of the Electoral Act 2010. Since the purported candidates, Senator Kolawole Olagunju and Mr. Bayo Idowu did not meet the requirements of law, they cannot be substituted under whatever guise; otherwise INEC will be committing illegalities."

According to a petition signed by the party Chairman, Chief Bola Olu-Ojo and Secretary, Hon. Gboyega Akinola was addressed to the INEC Chairman, Prof. Attahiru Jega.

It reads in part; "Names of Senator Kolawole Olagunju and Mr. Bayo Idowu, were submitted as the ACN candidates for the Central Senatorial district and Ekiti Central Federal Constituency I.

"Contrary to Section 87 (1) of the Electoral Act 2010, which provides that; "A political party seeking to nominate candidates for elections under this Act shall hold primaries for aspirants to all elective

positions," the ACN simply selected candidates for the above positions. In the instant case, Senator Kolawole Olagunju and Mr. Bayo Idowu, the ACN candidates for the Central Senatorial district and Ekiti Central Federal Constituency I respectively never contested any primary elections, either direct or indirect.

To also demonstrate the ACN's penchant for fraud, misinformation and contempt for INEC and the laws establishing it, one of the party's senatorial aspirants, Mr Babafemi Ojudu posted on the internet on Tuesday, February 8, 2011 at exactly 06:40:10 am that; "As a result of this the party decided to suspend the submission of my form to INEC pending the decision of the Ex Governor's Forum. Since INEC has a deadline for the submission of Nomination form, a dummy candidate was used which could be substituted after it's decision on the appeal.

That was why a nomination form was completed for Senator Kolawole who is the South West Vice Chairman of the Party. Kolawole as you are all aware is from Otun Ekiti in the North Senatorial District."

"Funny enough too, the ACN Chairman in the State, Chief Jide Awe also said the party had dummy names on the released INEC lists, to serve as substitution in order to douse tension. From the fore-goings, we have reasonable grounds to believe that the information given by the purported candidates in their affidavits or any document submitted by them must have been concocted to deceive and mislead INEC and the unsuspecting publics, including the electorate."

In line with Section 31(4) of the Electoral Act 2010, the PDP also demanded that INEC should release to it, all documents attached to Senator Kolawole and Mr. Idowu's nomination forms, especially the

affidavits they deposed to, adding that; "if any form of forgery (which is obvious) is discovered in the documents, especially the affidavits, they must be prosecuted for perjury and forgery. Also, the ACN should be penalised in line with Section 31(8) of the Electoral Act 2010."

Ads by Google

Copyright © 2011 Vanguard. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 2,000 reports a day from more than 130 news organizations and over 200 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.