“In many places, thugs and touts replaced INEC and took charge…
In a scathing criticism of the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), former presidential aide and broadcaster, Reuben Abati, expressed his dissatisfaction with the outcome of the governorship and State houses of Assembly elections on March 18, 2023.
Abati described the elections as a “burlesque” and accused INEC of incompetence in conducting a fair and free election.
“In many places, thugs and touts replaced INEC and took charge of the conduct of the election,” Abati stated.
He further added that “In some areas, before and during the polls, thugs were used to threaten, create fear and force residents to either vote for a particular political party or not vote at all.”
Abati, who served as an aide to former President Goodluck Jonathan, also condemned the security agencies and INEC for their failure to ensure a credible election.
He criticised the police for their response to the threat allegedly issued to non-indigenes of Lagos by the State’s Parks Management Committee Chairman, Musiliu Akinsanya, popularly known as MC Oluomo.
Abati’s frustration with the election was shared by his colleagues at Arise TV, who were attacked by thugs during the election.
“What just happened in Nigeria? An election or a burlesque?” Abati tweeted.
“Even masquerades voted. Touts and thugs replaced the Electoral Commission and took charge. Shame on INEC and the security agencies for turning our country into a comedy station of the world.”
What you should know: The 2023 Governorship Election process has come under criticism, and Abati’s comments will add to the growing concern about the credibility of the country’s electoral system.