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Ex-Oyo AG to Buhari: Withdraw REC nominations

Micheal Lana, the gubernatorial candidate of the Social Democratic Party in Oyo State has threatened to drag President Muhammadu Buhari to court if he fails to withdraw the names of alleged loyalists of the All Progressives Congress presented by him to the National Assembly for confirmation as Resident Electoral Commissioners.

This was contained in a statement released on Sunday by the former Attorney-General of Oyo State.

Lana via a statement gave the President three days to withdraw the names.

He described the nominations of the “APC loyalists” to become electoral umpires as unconstitutional and self serving. Lana said the failure of the President to deny the claims by the civil society that the nominees were loyalists of the APC and the silence of the nominees themselves despite the allegation confirmed the claim.

The statement read, “It is no longer news that President Muhammadu Buhari has nominated some personalities said to be members and loyalists of the All Progressives Congress as Resident Electoral Commissioners, and as a major stakeholder in the 2023 general elections in Nigeria, I, Michael Lana, governorship candidate of the Social Democratic Party in Oyo State, join patriotic Nigerians in condemning the action in strong terms.

“Having watched with keen interest the criticisms that greeted the controversial nomination of the said APC members by President Muhammadu Buhari in a letter to the Senate, dated July 25, 2022, read at plenary by the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, I expected Mr President to have cleared the air by denying the allegation or by withdrawing the letter in order for the integrity of the electoral process not to be compromised on the altar of partisanship.

“Since YIAGA Africa, on behalf of a Coalition of Civil Society Organisations, called to question the justification for the names of some of the nominees for appointment as RECs, it is curious and shocking that neither the Presidency nor the nominees have come out to deny the allegations made against them. This is an affirmation of the said allegation.

“I back the argument that the nomination of the party men as electoral umpires is self-serving just as it contravenes Section 156(1)(a) of the amended 1999 Constitution and would have grave implications for the INEC’s credibility, independence and capacity to deliver free, fair and credible elections.”

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