The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has asked the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to prosecute all those involved in vote-buying in the course of the Ekiti State governorship election.
SERAP in a short tweet on Saturday said the prosecution must not end with those caught in the act, but must be extended to the politicians who fund their election malpractice.
BREAKING: #EkitiDecides2022: We’re suing to compel INEC to prosecute anyone suspected to be responsible for vote buying and electoral bribery in Ekiti State and the politicians who sent them.
— SERAP (@SERAPNigeria) June 18, 2022
The group’s reaction trails news of vote-buyers being arrested by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Parading some of the suspects at the Oke Ori Omi Area Division of the Nigerian Police Force, the authorities said the individuals were caught with monies allegedly used to induce voters, an act the EFCC officials say were carried out surreptitiously.
While the polls were relatively peaceful, observers say they witnessed massive vote buying and selling.
One of such groups that testified to this was the Campaign for Equal Voting Access for Persons with Disabilities (EVAPWD), a program of the Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD).
According to the body, its observers witnessed massive vote buying and selling, particularly in “Polling Unit (PU) 001, Ward 10, Irepodun/Ifelodun LGA, PU 002, Ward 10, Odo-Oye / Ayedun 1, Gbonyi LGA, and PU 039, Ward 11, Ado-Ekiti LGA”.
In a communique signed by its chairman, David O. Anyaele, the group however, noted that it is impressed to observe that marginalized populations – the aged, nursing mothers and pregnant women and persons with disabilities were offered priority voting in most of the polling units observed.