The Nigerian Human Rights Writers Association (HURIWA) on Wednesday challenged the Independent National Election Commission (INEC) to publish details of politicians buying and hoarding permanent voter cards to rig the 2023 general election.
These politicians must be named, shamed and prosecuted immediately,” said the HURIWA National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onubiko, in a statement, insisting that there should be no cover-up if the electoral governance is really serious about free and fair elections next year.
The group called for expediting the passage of the draft law establishing the National Commission for Electoral Crimes and Related Matters 2022 that is currently before the House of Representatives Committee, noting that the presence of the Electoral Crimes Commission will facilitate the speedy prosecution of elections. Including PVC buyers.
Recall that the INEC National Commissioner overseeing the Federal Capital Territory, Nasarawa, Kaduna and Plateau states, Mohamed Haruna, raised the alarm on Monday in Abuja that some politicians were buying PVCs ahead of the 2023 elections. He also disclosed that two people were recently convicted of illegal possession of PVCs in Sokoto and Kano states.
The Independent National Electoral Commission later pledged that anyone caught buying or selling PVCs would be arrested and prosecuted, warning politicians and political parties that they would not condone any illegal actions.
However, HURIWA’s Onwubiko said: “We condemn the actions of desperate politicians who buy and hoard PVCs due to fraud and poor electoral practices in the upcoming 2023 general elections. It is important that this method of vote-buying is sanctioned and the Independent National Electoral Commission must disqualify all those who buy PVCs PVCs and catch them and sue them in the courts.
“INEC should stop talking so much and do less. Now INEC should have a list of all the politicians who buy PVCs, name and shame and prosecute them using the current election law of 2022. The INEC should realize ( INEC) that strategic planning is what is needed and not loud noise, publicity and unnecessary publicity.
The Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) must toughen up its processes and technologies that have been hacked by ghost voters and underage voters. These shortcomings, if not checked using the provisions of the election law, will jeopardize the elections.
The National Assembly must also move quickly on the bill before it to establish an Electoral Crimes Commission that would expedite the prosecution of rogue politicians. But first, NASS must remove Section 32 of Part IV of the bill that criminalizes free speech.
“All eyes should also be on the 205,127 PVCs yet to be collected in Ekiti state as well as the thousands of uncollected PVCs in other states of the federation because desperate politicians must plan how they can connive the hacked INEC staff to buy these PVCs.
“The Independent Electoral Commission should investigate allegations that undesirable elements were hired for $25 million in cash, by an unspecified power broker in the All Progressives Congress and that this unpatriotic element funds a faction of IPOB, the cabal led by the IPOB mainstream that has been denounced.” Mazi Nnamdi Kanu who is allegedly responsible for attacking the facilities of the Independent National Electoral Commission to reduce the chances of the Labor Party presidential candidate Peter Obi All Progressives Congress.
“Finally, Nigerians should go out to the INEC offices to get their PVC cards and exercise their privilege in the coming year. The Independent National Electoral Commission must reduce the organized confusion and chaos that is usually orchestrated by some of its corrupt functionaries to undermine the ability of Nigerians to collect their EDs.”
2023: Publication of Politicians Buying PVCs Immediately – HURIWA Challenges NEC