… says ‘his conduct justifies our earlier demand for his removal’
Peoples Democratic Party, on Sunday, demanded the arrest and prosecution of the Resident Electoral Commissioner of the Independent National Electoral Commission in Adamawa State, Hudu Yunusa-Ari.
Ari had earlier on Sunday declared candidate of the All Progressives Congress, Aisha ‘Binani’ Dahiru the winner of the governorship election in Adamawa State while the collation of results had yet to be concluded.
Only the returning officer appointed by INEC is empowered by the 2022 Electoral Act to declare and announce the winner in an election.
The Returning Officer for the governorship election in Adamawa, Prof Mele Lamido.
INEC has, however, issued a statement declaring the announcement as “null and void”.
PDP spokesperson, Debo Ologunagba, in a statement on Sunday, said Yunusa-Ari’s action justified the earlier demand that he should be removed as the REC in Adamawa.
The statement read, “The PDP demands the immediate arrest and prosecution of the Adamawa State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Hudu Yunusa-Ari, for making such an illegal declaration in a criminal usurpation of the duties and powers of the Returning Officer, Prof Mohammed Mele, while collation was on-going.
“It is even more absurd that the Adamawa State REC did not only usurp the powers of the Returning Officer but attempted to declare a winner without figures in reckless violation of the provisions of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended), the Electoral Act, 2022, INEC Guidelines as well as the sensibility of the people of Adamawa State.
“This reprehensible criminal conduct of the Adamawa State REC confirms the earlier alarms by the PDP which demanded his immediate removal from Adamawa State following evidence of his complicity and being compromised by the APC and its candidate to manipulate the election in their favour notwithstanding the votes by the people of Adamawa State.
“Mallam Yunusa Ari’s action is subversive and calculated to cause crisis in Adamawa State, destabilize our democracy and peaceful co-existence as a nation. We call on the Inspector General of Police to immediately arrest Mallam Yunusa Ari and make him face the full wrath of the law for his conduct.
The PDP, therefore, urged INEC to “immediately” conclude the collation of results, adding that the results already collated across the 69 polling units where the supplementary elections were held and on the INEC result viewing (IReV) portal show that Ahmadu Fintiri won the poll.