Onyebuchi Ezigbo in Abuja
The Democratic Peoples Congress has asked the 36 state Houses of Assembly to reject Senate endorsement of independent candidates in the ongoing Constitutional amendment.
The party also urges the state assemblies across the country to reject the unconstitutional power the Senate arrogated to the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to deregister political parties that did not win an election at a time the nationâ€™s electoral process is grossly marred by irregularities, rigging, brigandage etc.
In a statement issued yesterday by its National Chairman, Rev Olusegun Peters, DPC said in advanced multi-party democracies, political parties are not deregistered based on their failure to win legislative seats or secure a percentage of votes cast in polls.
It said political parties are allowed to function or fizzle out if their manifestoes are not acceptable to the people, definitely not by obnoxious, outrageous and draconian laws and legislative fiat.
â€œIt is unacceptable, unjust, undemocratic and in bad faith by major political parties who see emerging parties as a threat to their continued stay in power. Nigerian courts have delivered judgments against ill-conceived deregistration of political parties.
â€œIt is obvious that freedom of association including freedom to form a political party is an alienable right which no law can abrogate.
â€œThe 36 state Houses of Assembly should reject Senate misguided legislative recklessness, rascality and impunity, to close the democratic space at a time it should be widened to accelerate the nationâ€™s democratic process.â€