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Reps Oppose Jega's Sack, Further Shift of Elections

The House of Representatives has opposed any attempt to relieve the Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), Prof. Attahiru Jega of his post and plans to further postpone the general election from March 28, 2015.
The House members unanimously passed the resolution on Tuesday, following the adoption of a motion of urgent national importance moved by Hon. Ali
Ahmad (APC/Kwara).
Attempts by the House Deputy Majority Leader, Hon. Leo Ogor (Peoples Democratic Party /Delta), to prevent the House from considering the motion, by raising Order 62 failed, as Speaker Aminu Tambuwal, ruled him out of order.
Ogor had observed that the motion by Ahmad was speculative in nature and contained no facts to support his claims that Jega would be removed from office or that the Federal Government was considering shifting the general election to yet a new date.
The House, in passing its resolution, advised the government, the political class and security agencies to heed the warning of imminent and present danger in the event that the elections were are shifted further.
Furthermore, the House resolved to hold accountable anyone who foists on INEC any decision or action whatsoever that would make it impracticable to conduct the elections on March 28 and
April 11 respectively, including the unconstitutional attempt to remove Jega from office.
Ahmad said the postponement of the general election by six weeks, because of the Boko Haram insurgency, in the
North-east, had heightened the likelihood for pre-election violence.
He expressed alarm over the possibility to further alter the time-table for the elections, as well as the planned illegal sack of Jega by certain forces.
“There is already documented evidence from several sources that any change in the current arrangements, especially removal of the INEC chairman, presents a possibility of violence and would occasion the sowing of seeds of a major crisis”, the law-maker said.
He added that he was apprehensive that such deliberately induced violence may snowball into post-election violence, widespread and systematic attacks, arson, murder and persecution as happened in the aftermath of the 2011 general election.
Ahmad averred that the planned sack of Jega would be unconstitutional, pursuant to Section 157 (1) of the 1999
Constitution, which stipulates two conditions under which the INEC boss could be removed from office.
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