Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA), has challenged the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to publish the details of politicians buying and storing up Permanent Voter Cards to rig the 2023 general elections.
HURIWA’s National Coordinator, Comrade Emmanuel Onwubiko, in a statement, said such politicians must be named, shamed and prosecuted immediately, insisting that there must be no cover-ups if the electoral umpire is indeed serious about free-and-fair elections next year.
The group called for the speedy passage of the Bill for an Act to Establish the National Electoral Offences Commission and for Related Matters 2022 which is presently before the House of Representatives Committee, noting that the existence of an electoral offence commission will facilitate prompt prosecution of electoral offenders including PVC buyers.
It can be recalled that the INEC National Commissioner overseeing the Federal Capital Territory, Nasarawa, Kaduna and Plateau states, Mohammed Haruna, had on Monday in Abuja raised the alarm that some politicians were buying PVCs ahead of the 2023 polls. He also disclosed that two persons have been recently convicted for illegal possession of PVCs in Sokoto and Kano states.
INEC also subsequently vowed that anyone caught buying or selling PVCs would be arrested and prosecuted, warning politicians and political parties that it would not condone any illegal acts.
However, HURIWA’s Onwubiko said, they condemn the actions of desperate politicians buying and storing up PVCs for rigging and electoral malpractices in the forthcoming 2023 general elections and It is important that this method of vote-buying be punished and INEC should disqualify all those buying PVCs, arrest them and prosecute them in the courts. DAILY