ABUJA, Nigeria – The Independent National Electoral Commission has warned politicians against using the verdict of the courts as basis for grandstanding and electoral blackmail.
The warning was issued on Thursday barely 24 hours after the judgment of the Supreme Court which dismissed the appeal filed by the presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party in the 2019 elections.
Speaking at a dialogue session with Resident Electoral Commissioners ahead of the November 16 governorship elections in Bayelsa and Kogi states, INEC’s National Commissioner and chairman of its Information and Voter Education Committee, Festus Okoye, said: “The courts and the tribunals are only democratic mechanisms of electoral conflict resolution.
“The courts and the tribunals are handmaids of the electoral process and exist to correct mistakes and allow genuinely aggrieved litigants and petitioners have their day in court.
“The courts and tribunals are not suited for electoral blackmail or extortionist settlement or political grandstanding.
“It is important to take genuine and serious matters to court while professional litigants and other meddlesome interlopers should find alternative mechanisms and avenues of ventilating whatever grievance they have.”