INEC declines comments as parties rejoice over court ruling on de-registration | Dailytrust

INEC declines comments as parties rejoice over court ruling on de-registration

Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman
Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, INEC chairman

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has said it will not comment on Monday’s court ruling that barred the commission from de-registering 31 of the 74 de-registered political parties.

Mr. Rotimi Oyekanmi, the Chief Press Secretary to INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, told Daily Trust that the commission would not comment on the court ruling.

However, relishing the euphoria of a Federal High Court judgement sitting in Abuja, which restrained INEC, from delisting them, the 74 political parties earlier deregistered by the INEC, have dedicated the victory to late human rights activists, Chief Gani Fawehinmi.

The parties, at a press conference on Monday in Abuja, shortly after the court ruling, also vowed to give the late legal luminary a posthumous award for laying the very solid foundation which enable them to win the court case instituted against the electoral umpire for wrongful de-registration.

Justice Anwuli Chikere of the Federal High Court, Abuja had earlier today restrained INEC from deregistering 31 political parties.

Justice Chikere, in her ruling, said having failed to counter the application by the applicants, the affected political parties had the legal right which must be protected.

Speaking at the briefing in Abuja, the National President of Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC), High Chief Peter Ameh, told newsmen that the judgement is victory for democracy and rule of law.

He wondered why INEC was bent on halting the muiti-party democracy in the country.

“For us, we will continue to defend the constitution; we will continue to stand that every Nigerian born or yet to be born will have the right to freely associate.

“And today is the day we that we honour Chief Gani Fawehinmi. We honour him for standing against dictatorship in expanding the democratic space. We all know him because it was his effrontery that gave us the encouragement.

“It is his aluta infinity that gave us the will to stand. So today, the Inter-Party Advisory Council, IPAC, has declared that we will give him a posthumous award.

“Let me say this before we leave, the Section 225A that INEC relied on has provision, the least of that provision has not been met, which is winning Ward Councillor, which is winning a local Government Chairmanship, which INEC has failed to realised that they are not the only electoral agency in Nigeria.

“We have 36 State Independent Electoral Commission (SIEC) in Nigeria that share the same power and assignment with INEC. They are not a baby to INEC. There are 36 of them. Out of the 36 of them, only six were able to successfully conducted Local Government Council elections.

“So, if the Constitution says that the requirement entail that we must win a Ward Councillorship position and Chairmanship of Local Government Council, the 30 states will conduct their elections and after that we can now judge parties that have not met the requirement,” Ameh said.

He said IPAC believe in the spirit of constitution that Section 25A was illegally put in the Constitution to weaken the foundation of the constitution which entrenched that there will be freedom of participation.

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