Fidelity bank banner UBA banner
SERAP asks INEC to probe ‘campaign spending by Saraki, other contributions’

By News Express on 18/11/2018

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+

Views: 363

•Senate President Saraki
•Senate President Saraki

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sent an open letter to Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, Chairman Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), requesting him to “promptly, thoroughly and effectively investigate allegation that Senate President Bukola Saraki spent between N200m and N400m in every state, except the six South-West states, to influence the outcome of the 2015 elections for the All Progressives Congress (APC).”

The organisation also urged INEC to “investigate the sources of other cases of apparently unexplained campaign financing and contributions for the 2015 elections by politicians and supporters of the two main political parties that is, the APC and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). We urge you to collaborate with the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offences Commission (ICPC) and the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in any such investigation.”

Saraki allegedly said in a leaked audio: “Out of the 36 states, I paid election money in 30. Some collected N300m, while some collected N400m, some collected N200m. The only states where I had nothing to do with were in the South-West. Even on the phone, I was calling and giving banks instructions.”

SERAP in the letter dated 17 November 2018 and signed by its senior legal adviser Bamisope Adeyanju, said: “Allegation that one politician spent billions of Naira on elections in several states of the country to support a political party if not thoroughly, and transparently investigated and prosecuted would undermine the public faith in the country’s democracy. It also risks distorting electoral processes and reversing the gains in the democratic and electoral processes that have been recorded since the return of democracy in 1999.”

The organisation also said: “Such spending if allowed to continue can shape policy-making after elections, and improperly influence the decisions taken by the country’s elected representatives who will most likely consider their contributions to political parties’ campaign as ‘investment’ and thus seek returns on their purported investment to achieve electoral success for their party.”

According to the organisation, “Probing the sources of such spending would improve transparency and accountability in campaign spending and contributions. This is essential to curb abuse and mismanagement of Nigeria’s resources, help to balance political competition, foster the integrity of officeholders, rebuild citizens’ trust in the political system’s integrity, as well as ensure that electoral processes and elected officials are not compromised by uncontrolled and unaccountable campaign funding.”

The letter copied to Ibrahim Mustafa Magu, Acting Chairman EFCC; Dr. Musa Usman Abubakar, Acting Chairman, ICPC; and Professor Itse Sagay, Chairman, Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC), reads in part: “Unexplained and unregulated spending to influence the outcome of any election can distort the electoral competition and lead to state capture by wealthy politicians and individuals.

“SERAP urges you to prosecute anyone suspected to be involved and/or complicit in the alleged unexplained campaign spending, if there is relevant and sufficient admissible evidence of violations of international standards and national laws. We request that you take steps within 14 days of the receipt and/or publication of this letter, failing which SERAP will institute legal proceedings to compel you and the INEC to discharge your constitutional and statutory responsibilities in the public interest.

“Unexplained and unregulated spending on election campaign would encourage politicians to divert public resources for political purposes rather than ensuring and directing critical spending for socio-economic development of the country, including on improving access to public services such as electricity, health, water, and education.

“Campaign financing such as the spending allegedly disclosed by the Senate president undermines public trust and confidence in politicians and poses serious corruption risks, as it can blur the line between state and party politics, encourage the use of national resources to fund and influence elections. Such huge spending by an individual can even be converted into a conduit for money laundering.

“SERAP urges you to publicly clarify to politicians and political parties’ ceilings for campaign spending and contributions, and to insist that all political parties and politicians disclose sources of their spending for the 2019 elections. INEC should also require all political parties to sign ‘transparency pacts’ that would mandate candidates and their sponsors to disclose the identities of donors and publish all spending and contributions on their party website and in the press before the 2019 elections.

“SERAP therefore urges you to investigate the sources of campaign financing and contributions by Saraki and by other politicians and other individuals to APC and PDP if INEC is ever to rein in the role of money and level the playing field for candidates and political parties in the 2019 general elections.

“INEC should carry out the investigation and prosecution in collaboration with the ICPC and EFCC, and send a strong message to politicians and political parties that INEC under your leadership would not tolerate any infringement of the democratic and electoral processes ahead of the 2019 general elections.

“SERAP notes that international law has increasingly recognised the importance of transparency for mitigating corruption in party politics and using disclosure of political financing as a means to improve it. The United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) to which Nigeria is a state party obligates states to enhance transparency in the funding of candidates for elected public office and, where applicable, the funding of political parties. Similarly, the African Union Convention on Preventing and Combating Corruption, which Nigeria has also ratified requires states to incorporate the principle of transparency into funding of political parties.

“Further, Sections 225 and 226 of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution (as amended) affirms the powers of INEC to monitor, inquire into and assess campaign finances, and a party’s source of and management of funds, while Section 228 provides sanctions with regard to party finance and campaign finance.

“According to Section 91(2) and 91(3) of the Electoral Act, the maximum election expenses to be incurred by a candidate at a presidential and governorship election shall be one billion naira only and two hundred million naira only respectively. Also, Section 91(4) of the Electoral Act states that the maximum election expenses to be incurred by a candidate for a senatorial and House of Representatives election shall be N40m only and N20m only respectively.

“According to reports, Senate President Bukola Saraki allegedly claimed in an audio clip while addressing Peoples Democratic Party that he spent between N200m and N400m in every state except the six South-West states, to influence the outcome of the elections for the All Progressives Congress. Saraki reportedly said, “Out of the 36 states, I paid election money in 30. Some collected N300m, while some collected N400m, some collected N200m. The only states where I had nothing to do with were in the South-West. Even on the phone, I was calling and giving banks instructions.”

 

Source News Express

Posted 18/11/2018 7:46:51 PM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

 

You may also like...
Barclays Bank begins divestment from Africa

$1 to exchange for N600 in 2017: Fayose...

20 reported dead as gunmen unleash terror on...

Why Nigeria needs to restructure — Obi

NUJ plans Bill to purge journalism profession of...

NLC sets deadline for new minimum wage

Buhari orders 12 attack aircraft for final offensive...

Yoruba, Hausa traders clash in Lagos

FG accelerates plan to generate electricity from nuclear...

IPOB demands release of Jewish worshippers arrested in...

US considering laptop ban on all international flights...

IPOB accuses FG of using delay tactics to...

 

Latest News Censors Board Executive Director dragged to court over generator theft 2019: Youths ready to occupy 50 pct elective offices — Coalition Reps threaten to shun Buhari’s budget presentation Lawyer queries Annual Report of ICC Chief Prosecutor on atrocities of killer herdsmen in Nigeria 3,250 APC, PDP members defect to APGA in Nasarawa Police foil suicide bomb attack in Maiduguri SDP senatorial candidate escapes assassination •Petitions IGP Saraki to attend launch of Trump’s Africa Strategy in Washington 40 inmates regain freedom in Ogun Fake news, biggest threat to 2019 polls: Lai Mohammed Reps want Nigeria returned to Parliamentary system Why Buhari refused to sign Electoral Act Amendment Bill: Presidency

 

Most Read NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (429,987 views) Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (394,899 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (327,777 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (281,198 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (247,885 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (229,302 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (212,163 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (193,350 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (179,658 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (170,494 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (167,265 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (153,728 views)

 

Zenith Zero Balance First Bank chat banking

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (76) Business & Economy (3,875) Business Verdict (54) Columnists (973) Complaints & Requests (95) Enterprise & Opportunities (208) Entertainment (575) Features (679) Global Business Monitor (313) International (2,820) Interview (167) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (147) Maggie's Blog (69) News (41,399) Opinion (1,152) Pidgin (13) Politics (8,158) Religion (915) Sports (1,818) Stock Watch (35) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

 

 

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera