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INEC should prosecute Lawan, Akpabio for breaking electoral act – Rafsanjani

Auwal Rafsanjani, Chairman of Transition Monitoring Group (TMG), has called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to prosecute Senate President Ahmad Lawan and a…

Auwal Rafsanjani, Chairman of Transition Monitoring Group (TMG), has called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to prosecute Senate President Ahmad Lawan and a former Minister of Niger Delta Affairs, Godswill Akpabio, for allegedly breaking the electoral act.

Rafsanjani made this call while speaking from London on Channels Television’s breakfast programme on Thursday monitored by our correspondent.

He said the duo broke the electoral act by standing for two positions in the same election period.

Section 115 (D) of the Electoral Act, 2022 stipulates that no person shall sign, or obtain more than one form as a candidate for different elections.

The duo could serve up to two years imprisonment if found guilty.

Akpabio and Lawan were both presidential aspirants on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the 2023 general election but lost out to Ahmed Bola Tinubu.

They have been making efforts to claim the senatorial tickets of the party for the Yobe North and Akwa Ibom North West Senatorial Districts, respectively.

However, Bashir Machina (Yobe North) and Udom Ekpoudom (Akwa Ibom North West) who had earlier emerged as candidates in the primaries supervised by INEC officials in their respective senatorial zones, have refused to withdraw from the contest to pave the way for the two party bigwigs.

Though the APC submitted Akpabio and Lawan’s names to INEC, the electoral umpire had rejected the names, insisting that it would only recognise those who won the primary elections.

However, Rafsanjani is alleging that the INEC had backtracked and is now challenging its own position in court.

The political activist sai, “We will not sit and watch those who contested presidential election and lost to impose themselves on us.

“The APC can’t impose people on us. The electoral act is not just for decoration, it should be obeyed. INEC should prosecute Akpabio and Lawan for breaking the law.”

He posited that the ruling party’s desperation to compensate those who lost primariew was already threatening the success of the 2023 general election.

Rafsanjani called on INEC to distance itself from politics and be truly independent.