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INEC charges Senate on quick passage of bill seeking prosecution of election offenders

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The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Wednesday urged the Senate to ensure the speedy passage of the Electoral Offences Commission Bill before the 2023 general elections.

The INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, made the call at a public hearing on the National Electoral Offences Commission (Establishment) Bill, 2021 organised by Senate Committee on INEC in Abuja.

According to Yakubu, the commission has not done much or anything about the prosecution of electoral offenders since its inception.

He said: “Since the 2015 general elections, 124 cases have been filed in court and are being prosecuted. So far, we have only achieved 60 convictions out of the cases.

“We will like to see more prosecution of offenders, not just of ballot box snatchers and falsifiers of results of elections, but more importantly, their sponsors.

READ ALSO: INEC fixes date for 2023 elections

“We look forward to the day when highly-placed sponsors of thuggery, including chieftains of political parties and candidates will be prosecuted.”

The INEC chief, who noted the importance of the bill to the 2023 general elections, added: “We are confident that the National Assembly will conclude work on the legal framework in earnest.

“In order to do so, there should be clarity and certainty about the electoral legal framework to govern the 2023 general elections.

“We are confident that the national assembly will do the needful and do so in earnest.”

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