Anambra PDP Chieftains Write Buhari, Ask Him to Sack INEC Chairman

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By Tobi Soniyi 

Eight politicians who come together under the Committee of Anambra State National and State Assembly Members-elect have called on President Muhammadu Buhari to sack the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu.

In a letter to the president,  which was received in his office on April, 26, the politicians who claimed they were elected on the platform of the PDP, alleged that the INEC chairman has been compromised and has therefore lost the basis to remain at the helms of affairs at the commission.

They also accused Yakubu of ‘manifest injustice’ for refusing to comply with the judgment of the Supreme Court in SC.37/2015 delivered on  January 29, 2016. A copy of the judgment was attached to the letter to the president.

They said: “It is indeed very curious that the INEC chairman finds its difficult to make clear logical deduction from pronouncement of the highest court in the land, the Supreme Court.”

 They also attached an internal memo of INEC which they said agreed with their own position that they should be the ones entitled to certificates of return for election into both the National Assembly and the Anambra State House of Assembly.

Excerpts from the letter read: “Your excellency, in line with your whistle blowing policy, we most respectfully attach as Annexture E, a copy of the internal memo titled: ‘Memorandum Submitted to the commission by the Legal Services and Clearance Committee on the Supreme Court judgment in SC.37/2015 between Ejike Oguebego and Others v PDP and two Others’ where the Legal Services Department of INEC invited the commission to ‘consider the enforcement of the judgment of the Supreme Court delivered on January 29, 2016 which restored the judgment of the Federal High Court having not been set aside by issuing certificates of return to candidates of the PDP who emerged duly nominated under the Oguebgo-led executive committee as held by the Federal High Court where the PDP won in the respective senatorial districts, federal constituencies of Anambra State.”

According to them, Yakubu has suppressed this document for obvious reasons.

They said Yakubu was misled into disregarding the commission’s internal memo by private lawyers whom they said had vested interests in the case.

They alleged: “It is common knowledge that the delay in issuing us our certificates of return is influenced by Senator Pius Anyim, the immediate past Secretary to the Government of the Federation who is hell bent on protecting the interest of Princess Stella Oduah.”

They alleged that Anyim and Oduah are business associates. They also alleged that Anyim worked closely with INEC chairman when he (Yakubu) was in charge of finance at the National Conference organised during the tenure of former President, Goodluck Jonathan. The SGF’s office under Anyim coordinated the conference. This, they argued, explained why Anyim had an overwhelming influence on the INEC chairman.

They said: “INEC under Attahiru Jega implemented both the Federal High Court judgment  in our favour and the Court of Appeal judgment against us. Now, under Yakubu, he has refused to implement the Supreme Court decision in our favour and refused to appear in court to defend his action in the contempt proceedings.”

They alleged that INEC, a creation of the law, an electoral umpire, was making case for adversarial political office seekers.

Apart from calling on the president to sack Yakubu as INEC chairman, they also asked him to investigate over-bearing influence of Anyim on INEC chairman and the failure of Yakubu to uphold the oath of office and oath of allegiance which he swore to and alleged flagrant abuse of office.

 They further asked the president to probe why Mahmood suppressed the memorandum submitted to the commission by INEC Legal Services and Clearance Committee on the Supreme Court judgment.

 They asked Buhari to, “direct INEC to respect the rule of law and do the needful which is to obey the judgment of the Supreme Court that set aside the Court of Appeal judgment restored the judgment of the Federal High Court by issuing certificates of return to us, the rightful candidates.”