INEC Chair advocates for establishment of National Electoral Offences Commission 


The Chairman, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Professor Mahmood Yakubu, has disclosed that Nigeria needs the establishment of National Electoral Offences Commission to prosecute electoral offenders. 

He disclosed this while speaking at the one-day public hearing on a ‘Bill For An Act To Establish The National Electoral Offences Commission’ at the House of Representatives on Tuesday. 

He said the commission when established would help the country to address the wanton disregard for law as well infractions and criminal acts witnessed during elections in the country. 

Yakubu noted that at present under the Electoral Act 2022, INEC was handicapped as it lacked power to arrest or prosecute electoral offenders. 

The chairman noted that the commission had always been confronted with various criminal infractions like vote buying, ballot box snatching, voter inducement as well as violence. 

He disclosed that as part of the incumbrances encountered by INEC, out of 125 electoral offence cases filed, only 60 convictions were obtained including the recent one in Akwa Ibom State. 

He therefore noted that the establishment of the commission would  lift the burden placed on INEC and enable it focus on its enormous responsibilities as an electoral body. 

According to him, the observation made by Justices Uwais and Nnamani committees were apt as they recommended the establishment of a similar body. 

However, the chairman stated that INEC had observed that Clauses 31 and 33 (1) of the Bill should be looked into and amended. 

On her part, the Chairman, House Committee on Electoral Matters, Aisha Jibrin Dukku, stated that the bill was a consolidation of four member bills. 

According to her, it seeks to establish the Electoral Offences Commission with adequate legal backings to adequately address offences and provide appropriate prosecution and sanctions. 

Dukku said as it is, the laws guiding INEC were blind to major offences like vote buying and other electoral infractions. 

She noted that INEC was constrained by the law and suffered delay in prosecuting cases in law courts, hence its failure to prosecute some of the cases at hand. 


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