The African Centre for Justice and Human Rights (ACJHR) has expressed fear that the current multiple litigations ahead of the forthcoming governorship election in Anambra are capable of ruining the election already slated for November 6.
As a way of preserving the electoral and judicial processes, the organisation, therefore, called on the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) not to obey judgments from courts of the same jurisdiction concerning the governorship election.
The Director of Operations and Programmes Development of ACJHR, Barrister Chioma Udonsi, made the group’s position known while speaking at the sidelines of an advocacy event held in Abuja on Wednesday.
Barrister Udonsi urged INEC to ignore pressure from political players who want to use judgment from courts of the same jurisdiction to reverse names of published candidates instead of heading to a superior court, in this case, the Court of Appeal, to seek to upturn the unfavourable judgment upon which the names was published.
She warned that if the commission bow to the pressure and accepts what she described as reckless swapping of candidates’ names even when matters are on appeal, such will lead to judicial anarchy.
While raising concerns over multiple litigations that have hit the governorship race, the ACHJR top official said if caution is not applied, the situation can ruin the preparation for the election.
She added that ACHJR will be leading a team to closely monitor the pre and post-election day preparations and ensure due process, as well as open and transparent electoral processes, are maintained.
Barrister Udonsi said: “It is important at this point for ACHJR to raise concerns over the trend we are noticing in the build-up to the Anambra State governorship election.
“Our organisation is concerned about the different judgments from courts of coordinate jurisdiction being brandished about by political players in the election.
“We will therefore like to sound a note of warning to INEC to be wary of such judgments especially as they concern who the candidates of political parties are.