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Pressure on INEC over Okorocha’s certificate of return

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 CITIZENS Advocacy for Social and Economic Rights (CASER) has unfolded lawful plans to compel the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) to issue Certificate of Return to Governor Rochas Okorocha.

Executive Director of CASER, Frank Tietie, disclosed to journalists in Abuja, yesterday, that his group was already mobilising constituents of Imo West Senatorial District to embark on simultaneous protest against INEC in Abuja and Imo State.

He said the mass action would start immediately until the INEC issued the certificate to Okorocha as the validly elected Senator for Imo West District.

He also said the group, as part of its mandate, had perfected necessary strategies to institute a legal action against the electoral umpire if it continued to deny Okorocha his victory at the polls.

He alleged that INEC has succumbed to pressures from powerful politicians in the country by withholding the certificate because the electoral body ignored a seven-day ultimatum issued to it to release the certificate.

He said, “Our concern as a responsible citizens-based civil society organisation is that we cannot accept the subversion of state institutions like INEC on parochial grounds of political exigencies. That is a direct threat to the constitutional foundation of Nigeria.

“Thus, the sacred will and mandate of the people of Imo West Senatorial District, being an expression of the Human Rights to Democracy, must be respected and not be subjected to the political whimsicalities of persons who do not respect the sanctity of the independence and impartiality of a state institution like INEC.”

He expressed confidence that the INEC would reverse itself and save the unnecessary and needless rounds of litigations and allow the law to prevail by respecting the will and mandate of the Imo West electorate and issue the certificate to Okorocha.

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