The Social Democratic Party governorship candidate in the June 18 Ekiti poll, Segun Oni, has threatened a contempt suit against the Independent National Electoral Commission for allegedly defying a tribunal’s order to allow him access to materials used for the election.
Former Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Owoseni Ajayi, who spoke on behalf of Oni’s legal team, also accused INEC of partisanship by refusing to heed his request for inspection and certification of certain documents within its custody.
Oni, who finished second in the election, petitioned the tribunal to be declared the winner, and on July 26 received an order from the tribunal to inspect the election materials.
Ajayi, speaking, at a press conference in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday, said, “They want to frustrate us. They think that when we don’t have access to the materials and documents, we will be frustrated, but the law has answers to that. We consider this a deliberate disobedience. They are deliberately putting obstacles in our way. This is an act of impunity against the law of the country.
“We are in the process of filing a contempt charge against INEC. It will be filed today or tomorrow. It is now left for them to determine whether they want to go to jail or not.
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Responding, INEC spokesperson, Mrs Rolake Odebunmi, said the commission had contacted all the parties and fixed a date when the inspection and certification would be done jointly.
Odebunmi, who said allegations of bias and partisanship by the legal team against INEC were spurious and baseless, added that the commission had no vested interest in the matter.
She said, “INEC has contacted all the parties through letters as I am talking to you. They (the applicants and respondents) have received the letters and a date has been fixed for next week for the inspection.
“It is not true that we are trying to frustrate anybody. The commission has been expecting the SDP team to come and the last time they came, the officers in charge were not around.”