Gbenga Odogun, Lokoja
Members of the People’s Democratic Party in the Western Senatorial District of Kogi State have resolved to sue the Independent National Electoral Commission for allegedly “falsely” using their data and signature for the failed recall process of Senator Dino Melaye, conducted on April 28, 2018.
Rising from a special meeting held in Kabba, the Kogi West PDP, a communique signed by the senatorial chairman, Mr. Taiwo Kola-Ojo, reflected the disappointment of party members who said that though they did not sign the petitions against Senator Dino Melaye, they were shocked to discover that their data and signatures were displayed during the verification exercise.
Fearing that the manipulations inherent in the exercise sign-posted a pilot scheme for perfecting rigging during the impending general elections in the country, party members have demanded for the criminal prosecution of all those involved in signature forgery and in the presentation of deceased persons as sponsors of Melaye’s recall.
Wondering how INEC could not “see through the criminal manipulations in voters’ data” during the exercise, the Kogi West PDP served a notice to INEC to be ready to defend its “negligence of duty, conspiracy and wasteful application of public fund.”
Stating that the party’s action was not partisan but prompted by public good, members believed that the prosecution of “vote criminals and their collaborators” will deter future commission and prevent wasteful expenditure of public resources.
The communique further called on INEC to be more efficient in the on-going Continuous Voters’ Registration exercise in the state, “to prevent disenfranchisement of many intending voters who are still unable to register owing to poor access to registration machines.”