Adedayo Akinwale ín Abuja
African Democratic Congress (ADC) has accused the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) of causing the world democracies great pains and serious damage with the way and manner it conducted the 2019 general elections and the recent governorship elections in Kogi and Bayelsa states.
ADC National Chairman, Chief Ralphs Nwosu, stated this yesterday when officials of INEC led by the Assistant Director in the commission, Nkechi Abu, came to the party’s national secretariat in Abuja on a mandatory verification exercise.
He accused the electoral umpire of deliberate connivance with the ruling party to subvert the nation’s democratic system.
The ADC chairman also challenged the leadership of INEC to search its conscience on whether the commission has actually delivered on its mandate to conduct free and fair elections to the satisfaction of the electorate.
He pointed out that INEC is one of the well-funded agencies in Nigeria, adding that the federal government is usually well supported by the National Assembly to give priority to INEC’s financial and other needs.
Nwosu noted that foreign governments and non-governmental organisations have also been supporting the electoral body with election management protocols; capacity building and human development to ensure INEC conduct credible elections.
The ADC chairman, however, lamented that rather than good outcome as regards to the conduct of elections, the “entire Nigeria democratic ecosystem looks more like a criminal enterprise.”
He alleged: “I wish to put it clearly, our country, Nigeria is in great danger. The systems are corrupted and the country is haemorrhaging. The quality of leadership is to say the least poor. Institutions have become compromised and undermined. State agencies are in ruins and infrastructure is in state of complete decadence.
“Dear Madam Director Abu, I want you to relay to the chairman of INEC, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, and his team of commissioners that by their continued connivance, they have inadvertently set the country on a free fall, and caused the world democracies great pains, and serious damage to the present and future world. I will say no more.”
In her response, Abu assured that the concerns of the party would be looked into by the leadership of the commission with a view to addressing them.
She disclosed that the INEC officials were at the party secretariat for four main reasons: to authenticate the executive membership of the party; to confirm that the party is actually occupying its national secretariat complex with the necessary valid documentation like the tenancy agreement or certificate of occupancy.
Abu noted that the verification exercise was also to ensure that the party is up-to-date with its book of accounts and to authenticate the party’s manifesto and constitution in line with the INEC’s requirements for party verification.