President Goodluck Jonathan has condemned the Imo State House of Assembly election held in Oguta over the weekend for irregularities, saying that the conduct of some persons and groups totally contrasts the one man, one vote model established by his administration.
The President said this while addressing a 13-man delegation from the Nigerian Senators’ Forum on Tuesday.
He urged the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, as well as security agencies to take immediate steps to bring all those who played any role in the violence and electoral irregularities that marred the election to justice.
His words: “Those who made it impossible for the rerun election inOguta to be conclusive must be brought to book. We must make it clear that impunity in the perpetration of violence and irregularities during elections will no longer be tolerated. Sanctions, promptly imposed on guilty persons, will deter others from engaging in such acts in future.”
Jonathan stressed that in order to successfully achieve the objectives of the administration in election matters, a culture of consistently free, fair and credible elections in the country must be entrenched.
To achieve this, the president said that any unlawful conduct during elections must be punished in accordance with the law.
He however, expressed joy that his advocacy for one man, one vote was winning more adherents across the country.
The President promised to work with other like-minded Nigerians and the forum, to strengthen Nigeria’s democratic institutions and deliver more dividends of democracy to ordinary Nigerians.
Earlier, the Senators’ Forum pledged of support for the administration’s efforts to sanitize Nigeria’s electoral system, stressing the need for greater accord between the executive and legislative arms of government.
The leader of the delegation, Khairat Abdulrazaq Gwadabe, said both arms must work together to ensure that more Nigerians feel the positive impact of political activities in the country.
She praised the President’s commitment to maintaining cordial and harmonious relations with the National Assembly as well as his respect for the rule of law.
Other members of the delegation include: Senators Abubakar Girei,Iyabo Anisulowo, Alex Kadiri, John Danboyi, Victor Oyofo, EmmanuelIbok Essien, Haruna Abdulazeez and Sunday Fajimi, Sylvanus Ngele,Bala Adamu, Zeog H. Aziz and Omololu Meroyi.
The Senators’ Forum was established in 2003 and has a membership of over 500 serving and former senators.