Akpabio and this chap actually deployed the law as an ass to outwit victorious candidates and INEC on this issue.
So painful that a political party will deliberately organise for a huge fee, satirically classified as a political “ransom”, parallel primaries without INEC’s presence and supervision to bring out candidates entirely different from those elected in the same Political Parties’ INEC-supervised primaries.
Yet, Section 29 (1) of the Electoral Act, 2022, stipulates that a candidate from such a political party must first emerge from a valid primary.
So what constitutes “valid primaries”? When Akpabio n this chap both emerged from seemingly “invalid primaries? Not supervised by INEC? In fact, the irrepressible Mike Igini Esq, erstwhile INEC Commissioner, Akwa Ibom, expressly wrote to INEC headquarters that only one primary was held and which he duly supervised, that produced Udom Ekpoudum against Akpabio.
Subsequently, the party organized another primary, which Igini declared illegal. However, Akpabio emerged from the latter primaries. And the party forwarded his name to INEC in furtherance of Section 222 of the 1999 Constitution. That Section stipulates that for one to be qualified to contest an elective position, same must be sponsored by a political party. So, the Akpabio’s party which conducted the subsequent primaries rushed his name like Lawan to INEC in compliance with Section 221 and whereas they had brazenly violated Section 29 (1) of the Electoral Act by not conducting valid primaries duly supervised by INEC..here is the legal and constitutionally fraud committed by Akpabio, Lawan and their Political Parties on Nigeria and Nigerians!
The Supreme Court using the nebulous precedent of “Not Interfering In Internal Matters Of Political Parties” …has thus unwittingly and regrettably validated this political contraption.
INEC which the law gives the power of supervision, says Akpabio and this chap’s primaries were not valid. Party say their primaries were valid.
It’s no longer an internal affair of the political Party for as long as INEC has taken a stand on the matter !!
Very sad indeed, that in spite of the innovations in the Electoral Act to cut these incessant vainglorious pasturings and shenanigans of Political Parties in Nigeria, a “Timid” judiciary with the profundity of respect, is obfuscating legislative and genuine Political progression in Nigeria.
Be rest assured that these same characters and their Political Parties are also preparing to render The ALMIGHTY BVAS inchoate, ineffective and ineffectual both in implementation and in law through the trappings of a Timid Judiciary.
Let’s all be vigilant.
. Dr Mudiaga Odje of the Centre For The Advancement of the Rule of Law
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