Following perceived breaches in the just concluded polls, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project said it has filed a lawsuit against the Independent National Electoral Commission over its failure to arrest and prosecute suspected electoral offenders during the governorship elections in Kogi, Imo, and Bayelsa states.”
This was contained in a press release made available on Sunday.
The suit, numbered FHC/ABJ/CS/1694/2023, was filed last Friday at the Federal High Court in Abuja.
In it, SERAP sought, “an order of mandamus to direct and compel INEC to probe the allegations of electoral offenses including electoral violence, in the off-cycle governorship elections in Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa states.”
They also sought “an order of mandamus to compel INEC to disclose spending details on the off-cycle governorship elections in Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa States, including the specific amount spent to conduct voter and civic education and details of the activities carried out in the three states.”
They argued that there was a legitimate public interest in ensuring accountability for the grave electoral offenses in Kogi, Imo, and Bayelsa states, and granting the reliefs would compel INEC to live up to its constitutional and statutory responsibilities and end the impunity of electoral offenders.
SERAP noted, “The recurring cases of electoral bribery and violence make a mockery of Nigeria’s electoral process and participatory democracy.
According to SERAP, “Unless INEC is compelled to arrest and prosecute suspected electoral offenders and their sponsors in the elections Kogi, Imo and Bayelsa states, perpetrators would continue to enjoy impunity for their crimes.”