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The Ogun State chapter of the Labour Party has dragged the Independent National Electoral Commission, Africa Democratic Congress, and its governorship candidate, Biyi Otegbeyi to court over alleged electoral misconduct.
This came after INEC released its final list of qualified political candidates for the forthcoming 2023 general election.
Speaking with journalists immediately after the court hearing, the prosecuting counsel, Monday Mawah noted that the list released by INEC was manipulated.
According to Mawah, INEC publicly declared that the Commission did not monitor the ADC primary election but later released a list containing the gubernatorial candidate of the party.
The prosecuting counsel added that this contradicted the provisions of Section 84(1) of the Electoral Act, 2022.
Mawah said, “On the 4th of October, INEC released the final list of the qualified candidate that are contesting for the general election.
“Surprisingly, we saw some names of the candidates of ADC in that final list and of course, before the final list was released, we got some reports and a sanctified document from INEC that the ADC as a political party did not conduct primary election neither did they conduct substitution primaries.
“And by Section 84 (1), every primary for the nomination of candidates must be monitored by INEC but the INEC with the responsibility of monitoring the primary election said they did not monitor any primary conducted by ADC.
“So, If they did not monitor their primaries, where did INEC get the name they published for ADC?
“Dissatisfied with that, we decided to approach the court to look at Section 84 Sub 1 that says INEC must monitor all primary by any political party.
“Also there is Provision of Section 177 that empowers INEC to monitor the conduct of any primary or any election. So, if this organ that had been empowered to monitor this primary is saying they did not witness any primary and then took a 360-degree turn to now publish names of this party they said they did not monitor and did not even conduct primary, the head should roll.
“Because if you want to conduct an election you must inform and invite INEC for the primaries.
“So, In the eye of the law, there is no primary in the first place. So, if there was no such, where did they now get the names on the list they released in favour of ADC?
PLATFORM TIMES gathered that the case was adjourned till November 17th, 2022 for further hearing.
“We think the matter will go on today but they (ADC) came and said there is something they also need to file in response to the counter we filed in opposition to their notice of preliminary objection and they have prayed the court to give them another date.
“The court decided to give us the 17th of this month for the proper hearing of the case.”
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