2023 Election: INEC Yet To Initiate Prosecution Of 197 Electoral Offenders

Several months after the general elections of 2023, the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) is yet to initiate the prosecution of 197 electoral offenders.
On May 2, 2023, INEC announced that it will begin legal action against the 215 individuals it had been given over from the 774 people the Nigeria Police Force had detained for a various electoral offenses during the 2023 elections.
The Nigerian Bar Association provided pro bono legal services, and INEC had said that it was working with them to help prosecute the electoral offenders who were detained during the general elections of 2023.
However, a senior INEC official, who discussed the matter with a correspondent from The PUNCH on Monday under the condition of anonymity, highlighted that INEC and the NBA would manage 197 of the 215 files the commission received that pertain to electoral offences.
The offences leading to arrests included dereliction of duty, criminal conspiracy, disorderly conduct at the election, possession of weapons, destruction of election materials, political thuggery, electoral violence, ballot box snatching, and theft of sensitive election materials, among others.
He clarified that the remaining 18 case files, which included murder charges, were returned to the police as they did not fall under electoral offences.
The source stated, “There are 197 NBA lawyers handling the 197 electoral offenders’ cases.
“The remaining 18 cases were returned to the police because they did not fall squarely under electoral offences provided by the Electoral Act, 2022.”
The official also noted that about 19 cases that relate to financial crimes would be handled by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission legal officers and that of INEC.
He stated, “These 19 cases were investigated and compiled by the EFCC. They are not part of the cases forwarded by the police.
“The commission has only one case file forwarded to INEC by the ICPC.”
However, he further admitted that the INEC had yet to commence prosecution as the members of the NBA appointed to handle these electoral offences were yet to be issued letters of instruction by the commission.
He said, “The commission is yet to commence prosecution. It is hoped that the letters initiating the NBA lawyers to start the prosecution would be issued this week.”
The source went on to say that there might be a likelihood of further electoral offenses as a result of the off-cycle votes in the states of Kogi, Bayelsa, and Imo on November 11.
Kindly share this story:
Kindly share this story:
Share on whatsapp
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on telegram
Share on facebook
Top News

Related Articles