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Ekiti Poll: Yoruba group, SERAP flay ‘see and buy’ voting


Ekiti Poll. Photo: Twitter/OfficialPDPNig

A group, the Yoruba Leadership and Peace Initiative (TYLPI) has condemned the act of open votes buying, which characterised the last Saturday’s governorship election.

The group said in a statement that the electoral crime was both a national and international shame and the very peak of corruption.

It expressed concern at the action, especially as corruption fighting is a cardinal focus of the Muhammadu Buhari administration.

TYLPI condemned what it called the age-long act of money inducement of voters, that was brazenly perpetrated mainly the two main political parties, in the full glare of both local and international observers.

“The group strongly believes that this is not for the advancement of our democracy and also unrepresentative of the authentic will of the people.”

In a similar development, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project, (SERAP) has called for the prosecution of those behind alleged votes buying and other irregularities during the poll.

The group, in an open letter to the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof Mahmood Yakubu, by SERAP’s Executive Director, Adetokunbo Mumuni, called for a probe into the allegations.

SERAP gave the commission 14 days after the receipt, or publication of the letter to act, or it may be compelled to institute legal action.

According to SERAP: “It is the responsibility of INEC to ensure political equality and prevent unfair electoral competition.

No body politic worthy of being so called could entrust the selection of leaders to a process of auction or barter.

“Turnout of poor voters may decrease, if they view a wealth-driven electoral system as increasingly stacked against their interests.

It is inconsistent and incompatible with the principles of democracy, the rule of law, transparency and accountability,” the group said.

Meanwhile, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has explained that it was never involved in votes buying during the governorship election.

The PDP National Publicity Secretary, Mr. Kola Ologbondiyan, stated this in a statement yesterday in Abuja.

Ologbondiyan was reacting to allegation that some politicians were involved in votes buying during the election, adding that the leadership of the PDP would never allow such practice under any guise.

The national publicity secretary told NAN: “The PDP spent its resources and energy on a democratic campaign that preceded the election and never set up kiosks for buying of votes.

“The party has vowed that it will never let go the abuse of democratic norms and suppression of the will of the Ekiti people in the governorship election.”

He said no circumstance would push the party to descend to votes buying in any election.

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