INEC chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, shocked the entire nation when he said he cannot guarantee conclusive polls in 2019.
Yakubu drew his logic from the stance that finality or otherwise of any election owes greatly to the behaviors of voters.
And since he had zero control of this, he cannot determine the outcome of elections.
Yakubu further postulated that there were no extant granting INEC powers to prosecute electoral offenders in Nigeria.
He said the absence of such laws was responsible for a culture of electoral malpractices.
This in turn was responsible for some of the many hitches the commission had been dealing with.
Yakubu continued: “The Electoral Act envisages the commission to sufficiently comply. You can’t second-guess any election.
“You can’t conclude an election on behalf of the people. We will soon roll out the Continuous Voter Registration exercise nationwide.
“The challenge for us is the level we are going to reach and the duration. Owing to the current state of the economy, it is going to cost us a lot.
“The duration is an issue because in the FCT, when we extended the exercise by one day, it cost us over N8m simply because everything we do in Nigeria is costly,” Yakubu said.
A quick recap of Yakubu’s statements will suffice to wit:
- He cannot guarantee conclusive polls in 2019 since he cannot control how people behave.
- No law empowers INEC to prosecute or arrest (with INEC’s police) in Nigeria.
- INEC will soon commence voter registration across the nation.
Whoever knows Yakubu should tell him that behaviors can be controlled. There are scientific proofs to this effect.
Laws are put in place to control behaviors. The police and other security agencies are enforcement agencies.
During Buhari’s stint as a military head of state, people’s behavior were recalibrated. Thanks to War Against Indiscipline.
INEC can begin a campaign now that will ultimately affect how behaviors are displayed in 2019.
If Yakubu had said he could not control how people behaved in 2019 and stopped there, that would still mean a lot.
But to extrapolate that to “I cannot guarantee the outcome of the elections” is a disaster waiting to happen.
Secondly, does Yakubu want INEC to operate as a dictatorial sovereign entity? How can he be thinking of INEC being both a prosecutor and a judge?
Where in the world does an electoral umpire desire to both prosecute and judge electoral malpractices?
Such an umpire can only be found in Yakubu’s ‘Absurdistan.’
Someone should remind Yakubu that both the police and the Judiciary are controlled by the Sovereign state of Nigeria, not a government agency.
Thirdly, Yakubu should immediately inform the presidency of the actual budget needed to execute a conclusive voter registration.
We have more than two years to accomplish this. Yakubu should get to work and stop complaining.
The president has promised to revamp the economy within 1 year, so Yakubu should not hide behind the “Economic situation of the country” and deliver a shabby election.
The last time we checked, Yakubu is a lecturer, guerrilla warfare expert, and professor of political history and international studies at the Nigerian Defense Academy.
He should know better. If he thinks he cannot deliver, he should honorably resign or Buhari should help him resign.