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Group Wants Political Parties Sanctioned For Premature Campaigns
By Kevwe Ebireri
The Coalition Against Corrupt Leaders, CACOL, has described the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as a toothless bulldog over its inability to sanction political parties engaging in premature campaigns ahead of 2015.
It demanded that the electoral body do it’s job by enforcing the Electoral Act to Sanction any political party that campaigns before the time perjured by law.
It quoted the chief press secretary to the INEC chairman, Kayode Idowu, as saying that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP and the All Progressives Congress, APC are guilty of breaching the law restraining parties from embarking on campaigns until 90 days to elections, but noted that so far no sanction has been meted out on them.
The executive chairman of CACOL, Debo Adeniran, said the INEC has further revealed its failure and ill-preparedness to tackle the challenges it may encounter in the conduct of the 2015 general elections by uttering such statement.
“As a matter of fact, the Commission is indirectly telling Nigerians that it is more of a toothless bulldog that doesn’t know it wields the prosecutorial power to sanction whosoever contravenes the law it is a custodian of,” Adeniran said.
He said the INEC clearly lacks the courage to check the excesses of the political parties and wondered if they were bigger than the law of the country.
“If some political parties are indeed running afoul of the law, then, it behoves the Commission to do the needful, which is applying the sanctions as spelt out in the constitution. It is not just enough for the Commission to be whimpering when the law has empowered it to take care of situations like this,” the group said.
It therefore, urged the INEC to apply appropriate sanctions on any political party that breaches the electoral law henceforth.