The Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, has distanced itself from some of its officials arrested and detained in connection with the alleged $115 million 2015 election largess by former Minister of Petroleum Resources, Diezani Alison-Madueke.
Some INEC staff have been accused of collecting a cumulative N23 million as bribe from Fidelity Bank as directed by Diezani for alleged rigging of the election.
Notable among the INEC staff accused of bribery are the former Resident Electoral Commissioner in Rivers state, Gesila khan, INEC’s Administrative Secretary in Delta State, Uluochi Obi Brown, former Deputy Director of INEC in Cross River state, Edem Okon Effanga, and the Head of Voter Education in INEC in Akwa Ibom, Immaculata Asuquo
Speaking to a group of Editors in Lagos yesterday May 9th, the chairman of the agency, Mahmood Yakubu, said it was the individuals and not the agency as an institution that is being investigated.
The body appealed for the antigraft agency to also extend its investigations and arrest to the givers of the bribe to the INEC staffs.
“Whatever level of cooperation any of the agencies requires of the Commission, we will give that level of cooperation because it is also in a bid to sanitize the system. I hope also it (investigation) will extend to the givers not just the takers so that there will be collective sanity. Whoever violates the law of this land and there are questions to answer, the person should answer, the person should bear his own cross. All the staff that are fingered are individuals. It is not a collective institutional thing. They should go and answer for what they have alleged to have done.”he said