IPAC exposes reasons INEC chairman faces removal threats
The Inter Party Advisory Council (IPAC) has explained the reason for several attempts being made to remove the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC) chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu from office.
According to the IPAC chairman, Engineer Yabagi Sani, the determination of Prof Yakubu to conduct credible elections had put him on a collision course with politicians who wish otherwise.
Sani therefore reaffirmed that the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS) is an effective system that will prevent electoral malpractices and has come to stay.
In a world press conference in Abuja on Monday, he said IPAC was satisfied with the preparations, arrangements and measures taken so far by the commission to conduct free, fair, credible and transparent, inclusive, peaceful and generally acceptable elections.
According to IPAC, this is, particularly, with its decision to deploy the Bimodal Voter Accreditation System (BVAS), an electronic device designed to read permanent voter cards and authenticate voters using the voter’s fingerprints.
He said the BVAS was intended to achieve two objectives – first, which was the verification of the authenticity of the PVC, the fingerprints and faces of voters during accreditation.
Sani also said INEC replaced the Z-pad for uploading the polling unit results to the INEC Result Viewing Portals (IReV) in real-time on election day.
“BVAS also acts as the INEC Voter Enrollment Device (IVE) during voter registration. Its usage has also eliminated the use of incident forms during accreditation on election day,” he said.
Engr Sani who was represented by IPAC National Secretary, Alhaji Yusuf Mamman Dantalle, said several attempts were made to remove the INEC chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, from office following his determination to conduct credible elections.
He noted that the latest was through an originating summons in Suit No: FCT/HC/GAR/CV/47/2022, at the High Court of the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, by one Somadike Uzoabaka against the Attorney General of the Federation and Professor Mahmood Yakubu, seeking an order of mandatory injunction directing and compelling the INEC chairman to recuse, excuse and exclude himself and or step down as the chairman of INEC pending the investigations against him by the various law enforcement agencies.
He said the plaintiff also sought an order of court to stop Professor Yakubu from holding or assuming any public office for a period of ten years among others, alleging that Yakubu failed to declare his assets at the Code of Conduct Bureau as required by law.
“INEC boss tendered evidence on how he acquired the property in court. Delivering judgment, Justice Maryam Hassan quashed the allegations of false assets declaration and stopped security agents from investigating him.
“It is victory for democracy, due process and the rule of law. Again, the grand plots to derail the ongoing electoral process, create a constitutional crisis, political upheavals and quagmire has been aborted. Nigerians will not tolerate a repeat of the infamous June 12, 1993 presidential election impasse,” he said.
He said, “IPAC commends the Judiciary for upholding the rule of law as the temple of justice and beacon of hope for all aggrieved people.
“Council applauds this landmark judgment that quashed frivolous, spurious, unsubstantiated, wide and baseless allegations against Professor Mahmood Yakubu by political hirelings and their sponsors who are afraid of free and fair elections, and want the status quo to remain.
“The judiciary should remain steadfast, decisive, firm and unwavering in the discharge of its constitutional duties as the last hope of the common man.
“IPAC warns these reactionary forces to desist from their plots to truncate the nation’s emerging democracy. National interest supersedes primordial interests. Council will resist any attempt to jeopardise the ongoing electoral process that will deepen and strengthen our civil rule.
“The era of election rigging, vote buying, ballot snatching and stuffing and falsification of results is over as we collectively take steps to protect and defend our hard-earned democracy since May 29, 1999.
“This time, every vote must be counted and count in the overall result. We must get it right and move the nation forward in the quest for sustainable democracy in Nigeria.”