We Cannot Prosecute Bello Due To Immunity —INEC
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission [INEC], Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, has on Wednesday, said that the elctoral umpire could not prosecute the Kogi State governor, Yahaya Bello, for double registration because of immunity.
Prof. Yakubu said this yesterday during a quarterly media meeting with journalists.
The INEC chairman said that the commission could not take action him because double registration is not an offence under the Electoral Act.
Yakubu said: “On the issue of double registration, there is nothing INEC can do with someone who has a constitutional immunity. The governor in question has a guaranteed constitutional immunity.
“We disciplined our staff that were involved because it is within our reach to take administrative action against them. Moreover, the Electoral Act does not permit us to disqualify any one based on the account of double registration. This is our handicap”.
On the allegation that INEC collected a list of partisan ad-hoc staff from the All Progressives Congress (APC), Prof. Yakubu called on the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to provide evidence to that effect.
The INEC chairman challenged the PDP to provide actionable evidence as it is not enough to make frivolous allegations.
He said that it is common to hear politicians make unsubstantiated allegations.
He cited the case of a politician in Anambra State who claimed that INEC had stocked two-lorry loads of ballot boxes to rig the elections against his party but sang another song after the elections.
In conclusion, he said:
“By and large, all we have to say is to ask those making these allegations to provide to INEC actionable evidence and we will move into action. Give us evidence and INEC will act swiftly.”