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Labour Party Legal Team Meets INEC Chairman Over Inspection Of Election Materials

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The legal team of the Labour Party on Monday, March 13, 2023, met with officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, in Abuja over the inspection of electoral materials used for the February 25 presidential election.

Livy Uzoukwu, the head of the legal team, led lawyers into the meeting which was held at the INEC headquarters in Maitama, Abuja.

The Legal Team was at INEC to discuss modalities for obtaining key documents that will assist the LP in prosecuting its case at the Presidential Election Petition Court, PEPC.

At the parley, INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu assured the LP Legal Team that the Commission will provide all the documents it requested to prosecute its case.

“INEC has nothing to hide. Documents available at the HQ will be given immediately. We are meeting with Resident Electoral Commissioners today and we will discuss how other documents at the state level could also be made available to you speedily,” Yakubu said.

INEC Disobeys Court Order As Labour Party Is Denied Access To Inspect Election Materials

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has been accused of disobeying a court order by the Labour Party (LP), who claim they have been denied access to inspect the materials used in the recently concluded elections.

The national chairman of the Labour Party, Mr Julius Abure, made the allegations on Channels TV monitored by The Trent on Friday,  March 10, 2023, in Abuja.

According to Abure, the party had obtained a court order from the Court of Appeal sitting in Abuja on earlier in the week, granting them the right to inspect the election materials used in the elections held on February 23, 2023.

However, despite the court order, Abure, a barrister-at-law, alleged that INEC had refused to grant the party access to the materials, citing logistical challenges and a lack of manpower.

“We are deeply disappointed that INEC has chosen to disobey a court order and deny us access to inspect the materials used in the elections. This is a clear violation of our rights as a political party and undermines the integrity of the electoral process,” Asuquo said.

Asuquo also called on INEC to comply with the court order and grant the party access to the materials, warning that the party would explore all legal options available to them if the commission continued to flout the court order.

“We demand that INEC complies with the court order and allows us to inspect the materials as soon as possible. If they continue to deny us this right, we will be left with no choice but to take legal action to protect our rights and ensure that the electoral process is transparent and fair,” he added.

The LP Chairman also called on civil society organizations and other political parties to join the party in condemning INEC’s actions and defending the integrity of the electoral process.

Efforts to reach INEC officials for comment on the matter were unsuccessful at the time of this report.

Labour Party Raises Alarm Over Failure Of INEC Officials To Upload Presidential Results

Julius Abure, the national chairman of the Labour Party,  has raised alarm on the impunity that is presently happening across the entire Lagos state where the results of the presidential elections collated in various polling units in the state are not being uploaded to the Central Server.

In a statement issued on Saturday, February 25, 2022 by Mr Abure, the officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC in connivance with the security agencies are claiming that the BVAS have suddenly developed fault and, therefore, cannot function.

The chairman said that information from the party’s field men has it that in places like Agege, Kosofe, Oshodi-Isolo, Surulere, and Ibeju Lekki, amongst others where results shows that Labour Party won convincingly, the INEC officials claim that the BVAS suddenly developed fault when it concerns uploading results of the presidential election.

According to him, “Information reaching me has it that in Lagos, they have refused to upload the results for the presidential election, they have uploaded that of the Senate and House of Representatives but for the presidential, they have refused. And they are using the police to drive our agents and supporters out of the place. And they said that they have firm instruction from INEC headquarters not to upload.

“For example, in Kosofe, they put the collation centre in a Local Government Area Headquarters. The place is sorrounded by APC and people are afraid of their life. They are not uploading, they said that they have been giving instruction to insist that the BVAS is faulty. And most of the places we won, but they have refused to upload.

“As I speak, APC officials are in Yaba office of INEC negotiating with the officials. What I have said now is happening in Agege, Kosofe, Oshodi-Isolo, Surulere, we have this situation all over. In Ibeju Lekki, our local government chairman who attempted to stop them was arrested by the police.”

Abure said that similar situation is playing out across the collation centres in Delta state.

He however called on INEC to ensure that only genuine and verifiable results generated from the various polling units should be uploaded.

He also called on the police to help this democracy to work and should resist the lure by the politicians to mar the gains of democracy by refusing to be used to deny Nigerians their choice of leaders.

Source: The Guardian

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