My Stolen Mandate


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The Whole Story - Elder Dan Imo’s “My Stolen Mandate….”  




Mobolaji E. Aluko, Ph.D.




In Remembrance of June 12

Ten Years Later

“That The World May Know”




June 12, 2003


Dear Compatriots:


With this Senate President Wabara issue, it is likely that the PDP may have bitten more than it can chew.  The controversy must be kept on the front burner until it is properly disposed of. 


It may yet be early days though, for all these pieces of information that I provide below make one to question:  Can Wabara survive?   It really appears that it might takegofernment majic for that survival to occur.


An interesting issue to consider is the following:  according to some knowledgeable lawyer, the first order to INEC on this Wabara case on May 30, 2003 simply asked the commission not to declare any other person other than Wabara as winner, and not to issue a certificate of election to any other person OTHER THAN WINNER.  It did NOT ask the Commission to declare Wabara the winner, yet INEC rushed to make a statement that Wabara won in a manner totally unsupported by numerical election results. This was against its own declared conviction, either before then or since, despite the fact that it continues to insist that Elder Dan C. Imo won the election fair and square.  Having made that declaration, it then was incumbent on INEC to issue Wabara a certificate, an order which Justice Egbo Egbo made on June 2, with an eye on the clock for Wabara’s swearing-in as Senator and installation as Senate President on June 2.


So it does appear that INEC is REALLY at fault in all of this, among other things.


But what now might Wabara himself do next?  Just as he withdrew his Election Tribunal petition, he might also withdraw his suit before the Federal High Court.  Since he is now the declared winner – and Senate President to boot – it would be up to Elder Dan Imo to file before the Election Tribunal Court to reinstate himself.  But Elder Imo would by now be late, since the length of time after announcement of results – 30 days – would have been over.


Aha! Then everyone will say “Our hands are tied; it is past thirty days!”, and talk about “doctrine of necessity” and “substantial compliance” and “let us move on in the national interest”.


Ha!  Part of the trickery of Nigeria’s judicial system, when our apparently smart-by-half lawyers will say “That is what the law says, that is what the law says.”


The law an ass!


We shall see.  It ain’t likely to happen, and we should now be looking for the fifth Senate President in four years.  Ararume or preferably Iwuagwu should be waiting in the wings.  My vote would be for Iwuagwu – until I hear otherwise.


So, compatriots, please grab a cup of coffee, print out this looong STAR REPORT, and read the full case of this Wabara Wonder – point-counterpoint: Imo, Wabara and INEC, not to leave out some commentators and spin doctors – and Monday afternoon quarter-backers.


Then come to your own conclusion…..


On this 10th Anniversary of June 12, our country must re-dedicate itself to moral uprightness, including with respect to elections.



Bolaji Aluko








Form EC 8E



I, Mr. Festus A. Ukogwu hereby certify:


  1. That I was the Returning Officer for the Senatorial Election held on the 12th day of April 2003 for Abia South Senatorial District of Abia State.

  2. That the election was CONTESTED/NOT CONTESTED.

  3. That the candidates received the following votes:



S/N   Name of Candidate – Party – Total Figures Received by Candidate/Party

                                                            In Figures – In Words


1.              Elder D.C. Imo – ANPP -  47,250 – Forty seven thousand, two hundred and fifty

2.              Chief Senator Adolph Wabara – PDP - 39,614 – Thirty nine thousand, six hundred and fourteen

3.              Barrit. Emeka Nwogu – AD -  8, 607 – Eight thousand, six hundred and seven 

4.              Hon. C.B.C Ajuzeogu – APGA - 16,365 – Sixteen thousand, three hundred and sixty five

5.              Hon. Chief Alozie Ongeizu  - NDP - 1,764 – One Thousand,  seven hundred and sixty-four




  1. That Elder D.C. Imo of ANPP having satisfied the requirements of the law and scored the highest number of votes, is hereby declared the winner is returned elected.


Signature of Returning Officer:__(Signed)_________________________________

Dated this 12th day of April 2003







PRES/134                                                                                            April 23, 2003



Elder D.C. Imo,


c/o Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)

Abia State Party Secretariat,



Dear Senator-Elect,


It gives me great pleasure to write congratulating you on your recent election as a Senator.  I salute you on this achievement, which is an expression of faith by the people of your Senatorial District that you will ably represent their interests in the National Assembly.  I have no doubt that you will acquit yourself creditably in this onerous but exciting duty and serve your constituents to the best of your ability.


You will agree with me, no doubt, that the outcome of the elections, which have so far taken place, reflects by and large the wishes of the electorate who have shown unwavering commitment to democracy by their conduct at the polls.  I urge you, therefore, to reciprocate the trust of our people in carrying out your duties as a legislator and plead that you should also put the interest of our dear country first in all that you do in your new position.


I would like to see a new spirit of cooperation between the Executive and Legislature as we enter the next phase of our fledgling democracy.  I, therefore, pledge to do my utmost to work in a smooth and harmonious manner with the National Assembly and look forward to similar cooperation from you and your colleagues in both Houses of the Legislature.


Once again, I felicitate with you on your election to the Senate and also take this opportunity to extend my best wishes for your good health and continued well-being.


Signed [ OObasanjo]











Abuja Liaison Office

Suite A5 Benima House

Aguiyi Ironsi Street

Maitama Abuja


27th May, 2003



The Chairman

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)

National Headquarters



Dear Sir:




I wish to draw your attention to the aforementioned and our meeting on the same issue on Friday, the 23rd of May 2003 at about 1:30 pm with DR. IGBANI, the National Commissioner in-charge of Abia State in attendance.


I am aware of certain unscrupulous moves by some disgruntled elements, which claim to be negotiating with me but are actually agents of destabilization, whose only obvious interests is to drag the reputation you have built for yourself and the commission to the mud.


I wise to re-instate as follows:


(a)   My mandate is sacrosanct and not negotiable under any condition.

(b)   I have not authorized and would not authorize anybody to discuss the mandate for whatever reason.

(c)   I have not, do not and will not, step down or give up my mandate under any condition(s) because I am the clear and declared winner of the April 12, 2003 elections for the Abia South Senatorial District.


I wish to reiterate my appreciation of the steadfastness of INEC for upholding its position in this matter as personally conveyed me by your goodself, in this rather unfortunate development.


Thank you and God bless.



Yours Faithfully:



Elder Dan Imo

Senator Elect

Abia South Senatorial District



Secretary, INEC

National Chairman, ANPP




ANPP South East Zone

ANPP State Secretariat

71 Ogui Road



30th May, 2003



A Press Release by the All Nigeria People’s Party





Elder D.C. Imo at the moment is the only ANPP Senator Elect in the entire Southern Nigeria comprising South-East, South South and South West.  The ANPP is watching with keen interest how the PDP in their quest for a favoured candidate will brazenly exhibit raw power in foisting further injustice on the ANPP as a party and the Nigerian electorate in general and the good people of Abia South Senatorial Zone which rejected non-performance, exploitation and oppression, hence they voted for better governance and good effective representation as represented in the victory of Elder D.C. Imo of the ANPP in particular.


The ANPP is aware that Chief Adolphus Wabara lost the primaries of the PDP to one Chief Emeka Wogu but was foisted on the PDP.  In line with INEC’s Statutory duties it validly declared Elder D.C. Imo of the ANPP as winner.


The President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria Chief Olusegun Obasanjo in line with the INEC declaration sent a congratulatory letter vide RES/134, dated 23/5/03 to Elder D.C. Imo (sic) “I salute you on this achievement, which is an expression of faith by the people of your Senatorial District that you will ably represent their interest in the National Assembly.”


Wabara having failed the elections and also withdrawn his petition from the tribunal, now enlisted the officials of the Presidency to help in truncating the mandate of the Abia South people as expressed freely by the people of Abia South and given to the ANPP’s Elder D.C. IMO.


We are also aware that Wabara has enlisted the services of some media spin Doctors to feed the public through the press falsehood that INEC has declared him winner.


The ANPP views this development with great concern, the effect it will have on the PDP as a Party, its government and the quest to appoint Wabara, the Senate President even when he is not a Senator.


The ANPP was told by INEC that all aggrieved parties should go to the tribunal.  We are watching keenly how INEC in order to satisfy the quest of the powers that be to appoint Wabara Senate President when he did not win the election.  INEC is estopped from tampering with the election of the Senator-Elect Elder D.C. Imo, as such will portend danger whose consequences would border on public order and safety.


That INEC has stated in several for and unequivocally that once election result has been declared that any aggrieved party should seek redress through the tribunal.  It is now for INEC to walk the talk.  The entire people of South-East Zone and Abia South in particular will resist any attempt to subvert their will as freely expressed in the April 12 Election.






Chief Emmanuel C. Uroh

National Vice-Chairman

South-East Zone (ANPP)






Vanguard, June 10 2003



Dear Fellow Democrats:



I, Elder D.C. Imo, the duly elected Senator for Abia South Senatorial District based on the overwhelming mandate of my people wish to state clearly the series of events that culminated in my being elected as a senator to represent the Abia South Senatorial District and the various acts aimed at depriving me of or making me relinquish the mandate freely given to me by my people.


That as you are all aware my opponent for the election Chief Adolphus Wabara who ran under the platform of PDP was foisted upon his party against their will, having lost in the primaries to Chief Emeka Wogu.


At the general elections held on  the 12th of April 2003, the good people of Abia South Senatorial District rejected non-performance, exploitation and oppression hence they voted for me.


That by the laws, elections within the Senatorial District have been concluded, I won and was declared the winner by INEC, and given a certificate of declaration and return.  INEC after verification published the result all over the world via their INEC website and till the moment the world does not recognize any other person as the duly elected Senator but me.  Subsequently, I was congratulated by the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria on my election as a Senator vide his letter dated the 23/4/03 instant, reference No. PRES/134 and personally signed by Mr. President.


Numerous attempts have been made to misinform INEC and the general public that I have relinquished my mandate and by the event of the past few days this malicious and deliberate falsehood can no more stand because the whole world is now aware that I don’t intend to give up my mandate.


That since they are aware that their earlier falsehood can no more stand, Wabara has gone on TV and through the press saying that I am parading false results.  The truth speaks for itself.  My result is the authentic, genuine one and it is on INEC Website till date.  INEC has never at anytime stated that my result is false but it is Wabara who procured results from dubious sources that is saying my result is false.


The implication of his claim that I have false results is to the effect that:


  1. The President of the Federal Republic wrote a congratulatory letter based on records from falsehood.

  2. That INEC results of the 2003 elections posted on their website is from false sources.

  3. That the protocol list for the presidential inauguration on the 29th of May is drawn up from fake records since his name was not there as the senator-elect but mine.



That if it is true that I have false results why has he been making desperate attempts through traditional rulers, clergy men and my friends to get across to me for negotiations.  I have resisted such attempts and I would continue to resist same.  Do you attempt to negotiate with a man with false result?


The loser, Wabara, brought a petition to the tribunal against me, seeking to be declared as the winner in an election which he lost.  Seeing the weakness of his petition after pleading have been settled, he immediately applied to the tribunal to withdraw his petition unconditionally under form TF001.  The move to withdraw by him was opposed by my counsels at the tribunal.  However the tribunal still allowed him to unconditionally withdraw his petition.  My counsels immediately challenged with grant of his prayers for withdrawal at the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt, on the grounds that the petitions ought to be been dismissed and not struck out.


His move after withdrawing his petition was to go to INEC with a fabricated result to enlist the support of INEC officials to declare him the winner of the election, which he lost after INEC had already declared me the Senator-Elect and there was no re-run in Abia South, which will allow for another result to be written.  He met a brick wall in INEC, which told him plainly that he is not the Senator-elect and will not give him a certificate except the tribunal says otherwise.  He tried to influence some few officials in INEC who gave him an insurance letter dated 30th of May, 2003 to enable him get screened by the PDP.  At the time of screening, he was not with any certificate.


On the 2nd of June he got an order of the Federal High Court, Abuja, which he could not get at the electoral Tribunal vested with exclusive jurisdiction through an exparte order which did not seek to maintain the RES but went ahead to determine the substantive matter without hearing INEC or myself who is the duly elected Senator.


At the moment there have been telephone calls threatening my life in various ways and there have even been attempts to abduct me, which by the grace of God did not succeed.  Adolphus Wabara in his last statement to the press has ordered the police to arrest me, all I can assure him is that if his threat is enforced he will only end up heating the polity beyond his control and the consequence of this, he will regret.


I wish to make it very clear to all who are involved in this attempt to intimidate me to relinquish my mandate that no amount of threat or intimidation will make me stop the battle to redress this injustice and monumental fraud perpetrated against my person, mandate and the collective will of the people of my constituency, Nigerians and Democracy in general.


The new strategy to hold on to my mandate is the ace of the world condemnation of the fraud.


People have reliably informed me from my constituency and I very believe them, that th loser has with the cooperation of the Resident Electoral Commissioner in Abia State and two other electoral officers, one Mr. Mba in Ukwa East LGA and one Ibe in Obingwa LGA in connivance with others falsified all the results starting from the booth to the Central Zone result.  Presently, his agents are engaged in burning of copies of results sheet to the extent that he is using financial inducement to collect result from even ANPP agents who have not yet returned their copies of poll results.


It is in time of great trials and injustice like this that the resilience and the doggedness of men have seen good triumph over evil in the world.  I don’t intend to be different from those great men who have changed the course of history for the good of Democracy and their country.


My case is a pointer, which makes the monumental fraud perpetrated against Nigerians in the elections very clear.


The rumour mills are agog that I have sold my mandate; my answer to this comes in form of a question:  What can a man offer me more than the mandate that God in his wisdom has given to me?


I wish to state clearly for the records that I have stated in various for a that my mandate is sacrosanct and cannot be negotiated away for any material or monetary consideration.  I promise that I will keep on fighting the usurper and the impostor of my mandate with all legal means available through the help of the Almighty God as his occupying that seat amounts to a desecration of the hallowed chambers of the National Assembly which is the legislative arm of the government headed and personified by its Senate President.


That I crave the indulgence of all Nigerians to support the cause of justice and disseminate these facts all over the world through whatever means for the world to know the charade called Nigerian Democracy as represented by the usurper and his co-conspirators.


God Bless Nigeria


Elder D.C. Imo


Abia South Senatorial District









Abuja Liaison Office

Suite A5 Benima House

Aguiyi Ironsi Street

Maitama Abuja


1st June, 2003



The Chairman

Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC)

National Headquarters



Dear Sir:





I have been reliably informed that Chief Adolf Wabara of the PDP who lost the election of the 12th April, 2003 has procured and served on INEC an order of an Abuja Court seeking to compel INEC to declare him the winner of the election which he lost wherein I was declared as the duly elected Senator for Abia South Senatorial Zone pursuant to INEC statutory duties under section 60 of the Electoral Act 2002.


That by the provisions of the Electoral Act, the only option left for anybody who is aggrieved by the result of the elections is provided for under section 131 (1) and (20 of the Electoral Act 2002.  Section 131 (2b) gives exclusive jurisdiction to the Election Tribunal in the case of the National Assembly election and by this section no other court has the jurisdiction to hear complaints or petitions emanating from the conduct of the election.


It is a fact that Adolf Wabara went to the Election Tribunal in Abia State seeking to be declared the winner of the April 12th election.  On realizing the weakness of his case before the tribunal, he made an application to withdraw his petition after submissions have been made by both parties.  This application for withdrawal was seriously opposed by my counsel but the tribunal still allowed him to withdraw his petition.  The grant of his application for withdrawal of his petition by the election tribunal is presently the subject of an appeal by me at the Court of Appeal, Port Harcourt.


That his procuring an order of an Abuja Court that lacks jurisdiction in respect of this matter after he has withdrawn from the election tribunal in Abia State amounts to an abuse of process.


That by virtue of Section 131 (1) of the Electoral Act 2002, I, Elder D.C. Imo who is the person elected was not joined or served any notice which is a contravention of the provisions of the above section.


From the foregoing, it is clear that the Abuja Court acted without jurisdiction in this matter because no Court apart from the Election Tribunal has jurisdiction over this matter.


The question before INEC is:  what is the effect of an order of court made without jurisdiction?


Answer:  The effect is that such an order is a nullity and therefore void.


What is Nullity?  Black’s Law Dictionary defines Nullity as “nothing, no proceedings, an act or proceeding in a cause which the opposite party may treat as though it had not taken place, or which has absolutely no legal force or effect.”  A nullity is not a judgment known to the law.  It is destitute of any legal effect and cannot confer any right on any body.  IT is the opinion of the Judge who delivered it and no more. (See Nnaemeka-Agu J.S.C) in Osafile & Anor. V. Odi & Anor, (1990) 5 S.C.N. J. 118, 129-130.


I therefore urge INEC to discountenance the said ordeer because it was made without jurisdiction, which makes it a nullity, ab-inition and therefore void, making it a non-judgement.  By Law, no contempt proceedings can arise from a non-judgement.


At this stage, INEC must resist any attempt to hoodwink or browbeat it into aiding any illegality because enforcing any order from any other quarters apart from the election tribunal constituted by the Electoral Act will amount to a contravention of the Electoral Act which is the basis, foundation and fulcrum from which INECD derives its existence and authority.


Thank you as you have an honest and transparent appraisal of the legal issues involved in this matter which will assist you to stand on the side of justice and the law.


God bless.



Yours faithfully:





Abia South Senatorial District








Vanguard June 8, 2003


But in his reaction, Wabara said yesterday: "This is a golden opportunity for me to speak on the matter. As an ex-diplomat, we are trained to be seen and not to be heard. And as a very good believer in government. I have all my life tried for people to see me and not to hear me. But that is not good for a  politician. I believe that is why it looks as if the other guy has the sympathy of the press."

"The organisation you mentioned (ANPP) has no authority to reject the election," Wabara stated in reaction to a question on his feelings over the rejection of his emergence as Senate President by the APP.

He added: "They are not INEC. But the truth of the matter, ladies and gentlemen, and I am speaking on oath and as the Senate President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, is that on the 12th of April, that was the day the National Assembly election was conducted. I took part in that election."

"And my senatorial district is made up of six local governments. When election results were being collated, at a stage and it got up to five local government councils, PDP was winning, with myself as the candidate. But there was a particular local government called Obingwa which result was still being expected."

Wabara continued: "Then somebody who impersonated as the collation officer for Obingwa local government arrived and claimed that he was the collation officer for that local government and turned in a fake result to the collation officer in charge of the entire senatorial district."

"The returning officer unsuspectingly collated the result and announced the winner and indeed issued Form EC18 the certificate of declaration. When the authentic collation officer arrived, and found that the results had been collated, he now queried where they got the results."

"Luckily the gentleman, Imo was standing there. Then the officer said he should return the certificate given to Imo, saying the gentleman who brought the results from Obingwa is your agent, an agent of ANPP."

"Then Imo said the document was in the car outside the building, that he wanted to go and get it. The next thing we saw was that Imo was in Abuja parading a fake result. Then the returning officer waited, he is alive, up to the 14th, and Imo was nowhere to be found. His agent too. He now collated the result and issued me with form EC18 canceling the earlier one, and he has the authority. The electoral law is clear on this. I won by the time he collated the result and he declared me the winner. What Imo has is like I give a person a cheque of N1 million and the person rushes to the bank, unaware that I have stopped the cheque."

Stating his claim to the seat, he said: "I have the documents and I will show it to the world, the documents that are fake so that people can judge for themselves. Imo violated the electoral act. As a matter of fact if I was the commissioner I would have arrested him, and his agent. But he is moving around here making all kinds of allegations."





Another quote reads:






But Wabara who had all this while kept mum on the matter opened up last Thursday shortly after the Southeast caucus in the Senate addressed a press conference where they reaffirmed their support and loyalty to him.

According to Wabara "the CNPP or ANPP has no right to reject the decision of INEC; they are relying on false information; they should go and conduct further investigation on the issue. On the 12th of April, I took part in the election and results from five out of the six Local Government areas that constitute my Senatorial District were returned. We waited for the result from one Local Government till the early hours of the 13th of April when somebody who impersonated the collation officer turned in a fake result on the strength of which the Returning Officer unsuspectingly announced the result and returned my opponent as the winner. A certificate of Return was issued to him. When the authentic officer armed with the result showed up, it showed that I was the winner. The Returning Officer asked my opponent to return the certificate, but he claimed it was in the car and the next moment, he was in Abuja, parading a fake result. 14th April, 2003, he was no where to be found, then the Commission cancelled it and issued fresh result. I won by the time the final result came. The whole issue is like somebody issuing a cheque, not knowing that it is a fake one and by the time you go to claim it, the reality dawns on you. Mr. Imo was parading with a fake document and I promise that I will expose him and his document very soon. I am a gallant winner".












Daily Trust  June 6, 2003




Wabara did not win election – INEC


…..The new President of the Senate, Adolphus Wabara, did not win the Abia South
senatorial election, says a commissioner of the Independent National Electoral
Commission (INEC), Alhaji Shehu Musa, who said the election was won by the
candidate of the All Nigeria Peoples Party, Elder Dan Imo.

The INEC national commissioner told the BBC Hausa Service yesterday that INEC
was in possession of evidence to prove that Wabara was not duly elected as the
Senator for Abia South senatorial district and that was why the commission was
determined that the order of a Federal High Court in Abuja that Wabara be
presented with a certificate of return is overturned.

He said confusion about who won the election arose from the Returning Officer
for the election who gave Wabara a certificate of return when he had already
given one to the ANPP candidate whom Alhaji Shehu Musa says actually won the

"We had to abide by the order and we gave Wabara the certificate but we have
appealed against it because it is unlawful. Firstly, no court other than the
tribunal has jurisdiction over election matters. Secondly, we were not
represented at the hearing of the case as our lawyer was not invited before
the order was given

"We have appealed and we have proof to show that Wabara did not win the
election. If they have proof that he did and the court admits their proof,
then that would be it. We cannot flout court orders", Alhaji Shehu Musa said.

He expressed dismay at the Federal High Court delivering opinions on matters
beyond its jurisdiction and said the order and the hurry with which Wabara was
made Senate President in spite of the controversies surrounding his election
was unfortunate.

"I see it as unfortunate. Maybe those who did this are not aware of the
consequences on the nation. They quickly appointed him ignoring Elder Imo who
won. The president himself wrote him a congratulatory letter. I think they
should have exercised restraint even if they are bent on having him as Senate
President", Alhaji Shehu Musa said.







But why he?  Why Adolphus omo Wabara?   Why he gan-gan and no one else?  Why the desperation:  to ensure a puppet Senate by hook or by crook?  



Let us read further:









Crossfire over National Assembly Leadership

VANGUARD JUNE 2 by Paul Odili


Before now, Wabara was not always in contention, although he had long coveted this (Senate Presidency) position.  It would be recalled that when Chuba Okadigbo fell, Wabara was one of those who sought to succeed him.  His effort was thwarted by Governor Orji Kalu, who it was opposed Wabara because he fear he could use his office to cause him (Kalu) problems in Abia.  But Adolphus Wabara’s elder brother, March Wabara, Chairman of a bank was wending his way as a power broker within PDP.  Marc Wabara was to cap his behind the scene influence as chairman of Obasanju/Atiku fund-raising dinner.  Insiders believe that the likely, perhaps unstated payoff for raising huge sums of money for the Obasanjo presidential campaign is the senate presidency for his brother.






Growing opposition: Will Wabara survive?



The Presidency is said to have favoured Wabara even before the expiry date of the life of the first Senate of the Fourth Republic. He has been a loyalist of Aso Rock; he fought on the side of the Presidency against Governor Orji Uzo Kalu; he fought also on the side of the Presidency against former Senate President, Anyim Pius Anyim, during the infamous impeachment saga. Ordinarily, he should be backed by the Presidency for re-election.




Let us also read this rather interesting speculation from Chief Robert Nnana-Kalu, legal practitioner:





'Wabara Was Defeated By Imo'



Q: What is the role of Abia INEC in all of these?

A: They are deeply involved in it. I have it on some authority that a few of their officials were bribed. But all these things have been pre-arranged, no doubt. During the election of Anyim into the office of Senate President, we gathered it was a fifty-fifty chance between him and wabara but Obasanjo backed Anyim because Wabara was in the Okadigbo group. We now hear that Obasanjo wants Wabara because even when he didn't support him last time, Wabara did not make any noise. That was said to be the strong point. Besides, you must know that Wabara has a Yoruba mother and can even speak the language better than you because he grew up in Lagos. These are things which anybody
can investigate but while I have no objection to Obasanjo wanting his man as Senate President, the brazen manner they did it instead of going through the tribunal shows that there is something amiss.

What they are doing is wrong. They are telling everybody that in Nigeria, anything goes; that honest people who have come out to join politics should just go back.





Adolphus omo Wabara ke?  Ah well, if that is the case then, o tan ninu mi then!  But sha o, the real issue is the shaky foundation on which this new Senate is built….




Vanguard 6/8

Intrigues that threw up the Senate president


Starting on a shaky moral foundation

NOT unexpectedly, the controversial circumstance of his electoral victory and his subsequent election as the senate president has began to attract criticism from both the Nigerian public, interested parties and even some members of the National Assembly. According to a member of the House of Representatives who spoke with Sunday Vanguard, "what we find worrying our democratic dispensation is that the senate dragged our name in the mud. We are worried that the chairman of our National Assembly as being accused of being custodian of a stolen mandate. It is worrisome and the earlier this problem is sorted out, the better for our credibility and our image" the member said.

For the Conference of Nigerian Political parties, CNPP, the controversial circumstance in which the senate president emerged means that the group, which is a coalition of about sixteen political parties would not recognise his presidency of the senate.

In a statement signed by Mr Kenny Martins, the group noted that the "imposition of a failed candidate" as the senate president was illegal and unacceptable.

The opposition All Nigeria Peoples Party was more acerbic in its reaction. Ibrahim Moddibo, the party’s National Director of Publicity stated in a statement that "the whole episode whose consternation sent shock waves to millions of Nigerians world wide is not only unjust and unfair, it is illegal and raises to an Olympian heights the mockery of a political system.

"The court action contravenes not only the provisions of the Electoral Act 2002, but dubiously and flagrantly disobeyed the 1999 constitution which vests INEC with exclusive jurisdiction on all election petition cases" he said.

For the Transition Monitoring group, a coalition of several Non-governmental
organization committed to the defense of the country’s democracy, it felt scandalised that the "members of the highest legislative organ of government could with arrogance and contempt defy the cloud of uncertainty surrounding Adolphus Wabara’s membership of the senate by purporting to have elected him as the president of the senate.

It therefore called on the senate to reverse itself so that its law making function would not be overshadowed by the legitimacy and credibility problem of its president.

The TMG also called on the Independent National Electoral Commission not to allow the apparent challenge to its credibility, mandate and independence to stand.

As if responding to the challenge by the TMG, a national commissioner of INEC was quoted as saying that it would challenge the decision of the federal high court at a higher court. He maintained that the senate president did not win the April 12 election and such has no mandate to be returned as such. But to all these, the senate president maintained that there was no cause for alarm. He maintained that the certificate of returns given to his opponent was done in error and the police should arrest his opponent for parading a fake certificate. He insisted that he won the election.

The unfolding events promise to be an interesting episode. How this is resolved would go a long way in determining the seriousness of the judiciary and the legislature but more importantly the avowed credibility and independence of the Independent National Electoral Commission. For now, Nigerians can only stay back and watch as the events play out.





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This page was last updated on 10/27/07.