Posted by By Musikilu Mojeed, Abuja on
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Maurice Iwu, on Tuesday cautioned Nigerians against voting.....
Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Maurice Iwu, on Tuesday cautioned Nigerians against voting for corrupt politicians in the 2007 elections.
The INEC chairman gave the advice in Abuja when a member of the British House of Lords, Baronnes Amos, visited him.
Amos visited Iwu in Abuja in company with the British Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. Richard Gozney.
He said Nigeria would not move forward if corrupt politicians were elected to power.
He said, ”The political elite have been exploiting the weakness and poverty of Nigerians to be able to foster their own selfish interest.
”It is so bad that somebody who has already stolen your money will use your money to intimidate you and make you feel like a second class citizen in your own country.
”The issue of money in politics is so pervasive that attempts have been made to undermine the commission from those quarters. “Some people have even described the political process here as an investment just like a thrift club that you put in your money and expect some feedback.”
He lamented that some politicians had ”acquired money in very ignoble ways and now use it to intimidate others from contesting.”
The INEC boss said there was a need for value re-orientation among Nigerians.
Iwu accused a section of the political class of plotting to undermine INEC so they could eventually blame their impending electoral failure on the commission.
He said, ”We have a situation whereby some members or sections of the political class decided as tactical move if not strategic that the best way to guarantee that they win at all cost is to start attacking the umpire.
”We have a situation of a very well managed campaign against our persons when we had not conducted one single election; when we have not given anybody any cause for that.
”When we started seeing attacks on the Commission, it was a tactical move if not strategic. The idea is that if the people lose the election they would turn around and say well, we told you that these people are biased.”
The INEC chairman assured that his commission would remain focused on the task of conducting a free and fair election next year.
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