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KOWA, ANRP head to court

By Seye Olumide
08 February 2020   |   4:10 am
KOWA Party and Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP) yesterday said they would challenge the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in a court of law for de-registering them.

KOWA Party and Abundant Nigeria Renewal Party (ANRP) yesterday said they would challenge the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in a court of law for de-registering them.

Acting National Chairman of KOWA party, Mr Mark Adebayo, and National Spokesman of ANRP, Mr Sesugh Akume, said this in separate statements they issued in Abuja.

Adebayo, in his statement issued by the party’s Acting National Publicity Secretary, Mrs Adebanke Ilori, said KOWA had swung into immediate action nationwide to explore legal possibilities.

Adebayo said that his party and 32 others had approached the Federal High Court, Abuja in 2019 to, among other things, restrain INEC from de-registering parties pending the determination of the suit.

He noted that the Federal High Court upon hearing the Motion for an Interlocutory Injunction adjourned for ruling on February 17.

“We were shocked when the news hit the airwaves that 74 political parties have been de-registered by INEC, KOWA party inclusive. We are shocked at the unexpected turn of events as the party is currently preparing for its national convention. And we had complied with the verification exercise requested by the commission in December 2019 and had met the requirements of the same.

“We won a House of Assembly seat in 2011 and a councillorship position in 2018 while maintaining our national headquarters in the FCT and state headquarters across the country,” he said.

He, however, urged members of the party and patriotic Nigerians to stand strong in the face of the flagrant disregard for the rule of law as the party continued to make efforts to move the country in the right direction.

Akume explained that in the past two years and three weeks, ANRP had operated as a fully-registered body and conducted itself with utmost professionalism, “forming a coalition of untainted, altruistic and driven patriots, who are fed up with the status quo and the sinking state of the nation.”

Akume added: “Within this time we built a culture based on the ‘ANRP DNA’; we modelled the character of the new Nigeria we envisioned. We engaged on issues, critiqued responsibly and offered policy alternatives.

“Many ran for office in 2019, but we all underestimated the sordid reality in the political industry, beginning with a rotten INEC, the electorate, the rules, practices, and entire political ecosystem. In all of this, it cannot be said we did not try.”

ANRP therefore said it vehemently disagrees with the electoral body, which based its decision to hammer 74 parties solely on the 2019 general elections, along with the entire injustice and unfairness associated with the delisting. The party shall, therefore, be challenging this travesty (solely and along with others) in the court of law.

“This little glitch constitutes but a blip in the story and trajectory of our beloved party. We remain strong, undeterred and committed to the values and ideals that brought us together for the rescue mission of our beloved nation. We shall also be using this time to recalibrate and reorganise, as we continue to build stronger bonds within, and coalitions with other political parties of like mind.”

The party also appealed to its members and those that belief in it to remain strong, saying further communications would be made to them in the due course.