The Court of Appeal in Abuja has criticised the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) over the 2023 general elections.
The comments are contained in the judgment of a three-member panel declaring the election of Abubakar Suleiman from the Ningi Central Constituency of Ningi Local Government of Bauchi State House of Assembly as inconclusive and a rerun in 10 polling units of the area.
While reading his lead judgment, Justice Kenneth Amadi said it was embarrassing that INEC could appear before it to act in favour of a party in an election dispute, by disowning documents that it not only issued but also duly certified.
He said the electoral umpire has continued to “dance naked in the market,” even though it was meant to assume a neutral stand in election litigations.
“The INEC as an institution should be reminded of its role in an election; to be an unbiased umpire between parties,” he said.
“It should stop behaving irresponsibly, having in mind that its duty to conduct election has a direct bearing on peace and well-being of the country.
“The role of INEC in election dispute should be limited to the tendering of all the documents used in an election and explaining what they were used for and how they were obtained.”