Ekiti election: TMG, TI, SERAP condemn vote-buying by parties

Ekiti election: TMG, TI, SERAP condemn vote-buying by parties

- Transparency International (TI), the Socio-Economic Right and Accountability Project and other have reacted to the just concluded Ekiti state governorship election

- The head of TI Nigeria, Musa Rafsanjani, said there have been allegations against both parties (the APC and the PDP) of financial inducements of voters

- Rafsanjani said the allegation is not peculiar to only the already mentioned parties but it is done by all the political parties in the country

Some groups include Transparency International, the Socio-Economic Right and Accountability Project and the Transition Monitoring Group have condemned vote-buying during Saturday’s governorship election in Ekiti state.

According to Sahara Reporters, the groups said vote-buying, had endangered the country’s democracy and could affect the credibility of the election.

They made this just as the Police Service Commission stated that it had received 35 complaints bordering on vote- buying, financial inducement and restiveness in some polling units during Saturday’s Ekiti governorship election.

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Reacting the monetisation of the election, TI and SERAP said political parties that were not satisfied with the results must not resort to violence but seek redress at the tribunal.

The head of TI Nigeria, Musa Rafsanjani, said: “There have been allegations against both parties (the APC and the PDP) of financial inducements of voters. This is a very fundamental problem of the electoral system in the country which political parties and politicians have promoted.

“This will affect the credibility of the elections. This allegation is not peculiar to only these parties; it is done by all the political parties. The electorate must not allow themselves to be used for money politics.

“The truth of the matter is that Ekiti election started with a lot of uncertainties. There was a lot of insensible politics which made the runoff to the election look like a war.”

Also, the SERAP director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, said the monetisation of the electoral process had been in the country for a long time.

According to Mumuni, “Let whoever is dissatisfied with the process take the appropriate steps which is to go before the court and try to upturn the election results, but something must be done about the monetisation of the electoral process. It is showing us in a bad light in the view of the international and domestic observers who witnessed the election.”

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Also, a coalition of over 400 civil society organisations, under the aegis of the TMG, said that there was a systemic case of vote-buying and financial inducement of voters in the election.

The TMG, in a statement by its chairperson, Abiola Akiyode-Afolabi, however, said the election was largely peaceful.

It statement stated: “The TMG is of the opinion that mobilising the whole gamut of the country’s security infrastructure is not necessary as this could intimidate voters and further drive voter apathy which is a key concern for the electoral process, looking at the discrepancy between the number of registered voters and those who actually voted.”

“The TMG is concerned about the growing trend of vote-buying by political parties and contestants in elections.

“This practice is becoming the norm with political parties trying to outwit each other in the sums paid to voters. This practice is a bad omen for the country’s democracy.”

Meanwhile, NAIJ.com had reported that the INEC told the PDP candidate in the Ekiti state gubernatorial election, Kolapo Olusola Eleka, to carry out his threat of challenging the result of the poll in court.

The electoral body insisted that the result of the election was a reflection of the will of the people and that Eleka heading to court was the proper thing to do.

“INEC welcomes the decision of Prof. Eleka to go to the tribunal on the outcome of the governorship election. That is the proper thing to do,” INEC’s director of voter education and publicity, Wole Osaze-Uzzi said.

Did Ekiti residents take money to vote? | Naij.com TV:

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Source: Naija.ng

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