A human rights lawyer, Mr Femi Falana (SAN), yesterday called for the prosecution of all those involved in vote buying and selling.
He said for the electoral process to be more credible in the country, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) must ensure that politicians involved in vote buying are prosecuted.
Falana spoke during a lecture tagged ‘The mass media as the fulcrum of democracy: A celebration of BCOS Television at forty’, held at the International Conference Centre, University of Ibadan, Oyo State.
Represented by Dr. (Mrs.) Tayo Omitola, the legal luminary said media organisations have critical roles to play in stemming the tide of electoral crimes and vote-buying by exposing the perpetrators.
“Needs to assist in fighting against the prevalent electoral crime of vote buying under the ‘vote-and-get-paid’ culture as was witnessed in Ekiti State governorship election.
“The evidence of vote buying in Ekiti State is overwhelming. Some of the buyers were arrested by the law enforcement agencies. These criminal elements and their cohorts recklessly breached the provisions of the Electoral Act on bribery and corruption of the democratic system.
“Apart from exposing some of the criminally minded politicians, the media should mount pressure on the Independent National Electoral Commission to prosecute them in line with Section 145 of the Electoral Act. The ruling class must be allowed to practice democracy with plutocracy.”