By Akeem Abas
Officials of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), who are found to be corrupt, risk being sacked and prosecuted, Mr Mutiu Agboke, the Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) in Oyo State, has said.
Agboke who gave the warning on Tuesday in Ibadan at the maiden Ramadan lecture organised by the commission, said that INEC would not hesitate in sacking and prosecuting any of its staff involved in corrupt practices.
The theme of the lecture was “ Free, Fair and Credible Election – Role of INEC from Islamic Perspective.’’
Agboke said the mandate of the commission was to make election processes transparent, impartial, credible, free and fair.
”INEC has no interest in any of the political parties but to carry out its constitutional responsibilities. Officers who compromise the process risk sack and prosecution.
” Any INEC personnel that compromises the process risks his or her job and will be jailed.
”The commission is trying its best as regards the welfare of staff and it is looking inward to improve on the welfare package.
”All these are to ensure that our staff do not look up to some politicians for inducement of any kind,’’ he said.
He urged Nigerians to have trust in the electoral body, saying there was no reason for skepticism about its ability to conduct credible polls.
The chairman of the occasion, Mr Waheed Oyewole, urged INEC in the state to build on the successes recorded during June 2 Ibarapa East State Constituency by-election.
Oyewole, who is the chairman of Intra Party Advisory Commission(IPAC) in Oyo State, pledged that political parties would abide with electoral laws and support all efforts aimed at promoting credible, free and fair elections.
Chief Adebayo Oyero, a former President-General of Central Council of Ibadan Indigenes, advocated sanctions for violators of electoral laws irrespective of their status.
Prof. Hafeez Oladosu of the University of Ibadan, who was the guest lecturer, admonished INEC personnel to be just in dealing with all political parties.