By Nathaniel Gana
Thursday 6th July 2023
The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has filed a six-count charge against the suspended Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC) deployed for Adamawa State, Barr. Hudu Yunusa Ari.
The case was filed at the Adamawa State High Court sitting in Yola, over his unprofessional conduct in the recently concluded Governorship election in the state.
The Chairman, Information and Voter Education Committee (IVEC) and National Commissioner, Festus Okoye, made the disclosure in a statement issued on today.
It would be recalled that on Tuesday 4th July 2023, the INEC Chairman, Prof. Mahmood Yakubu, during a meeting with RECs, confirmed the receipt of case files from the Nigeria Police, following the conclusion of investigation into alleged electoral offences committed during the 2023 General Election, including the one involving Ari while assuring Nigerians of immediate action on the matter.
Explaining the reason for the filing the charges at the Court in Adamawa, Okoye said, “as provided by Section 145(1) of the Electoral Act 2022, an offence committed under the Act shall be triable in a Magistrate Court or a High Court of a State in which the offence is committed, or the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja. Furthermore, Section 145(2) of the Act provides that a prosecution under the Act shall be undertaken by legal officers of the Commission, or any legal practitioner appointed by it.”
Okoye added: “Having reviewed the case file from the Police which established a prima facie case against Barr. Hudu Yunusa Ari, the Commission has filed a six-count charge against him at the Adamawa State High Court sitting in Yola. Consequently, the Court has fixed Wednesday 12th July 2023 for commencement of trial.”.
Okoye also affirmed that the Commission was working with the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) for the diligent prosecution of other cases.