Fred Ezeh, Abuja
The Coalition of United Political Parties (CUPP) has described as a ‘waste of tax payers’ money’ the attempt by the lndependent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to appeal the recent court judgement that nullified the de-registration of some political parties.
CUPP called on the INEC to obey the court judgment that ordered it to re-list the 23 political parties it deregistered on February 6, and also channel its energy and resources on other productive ventures that would strengthen the electoral system in Nigeria.
A five-man panel of justices led by the President of the Court of Appeal, Justice Monica Dongban-Mensem, in a unanimous judgment voided the deregistration of the parties, declaring that, ‘a constitutional violation, particularly by public or statutory authority, should not be allowed to survive even for a second for any reason.’
CUPP, in a statement released in Abuja, on Tuesday, by Olusegun Peters, Chairman, Contact and Mobilization and Member, Steering Committee, called on INEC Chairman Prof Mahmood Yakubu to comply with the order of the court by immediately re-listing the affected political parties in the interest of the country and sustainable democracy in Nigeria.
‘The era of impunity in Nigeria’s political system is gone. As a responsible government agency, if INEC wants to appeal, it should first obey the judgment of the court of competent jurisdiction. This is the essence of the rule of law and social justice as provided in the 1999 Constitution and the Electoral Act 2010 as amended. Anything short of that is justice juxtaposed and unacceptable,’ the CUPP statement reads.
CUPP asked the National Assembly to include the INEC in its ongoing investigations of government ministries and agencies.
‘INEC should account to Nigerians how it spent billions of naira allotted to it to conduct the contentious 2019 general election.
‘It is evident that the commission has been reckless in spending huge funds on unnecessary appeals instead of obeying court judgments.’