Reactions have continued to trail the alleged double registration saga by Kogi State, Governor Alhaji Yahaya Bello that led to the sack of two INEC officials and the compulsory retirement of the other.
A former Deputy governorship candidate in the November 2015 election in the State, James Faleke commended INEC for upholding the constitution of the land.
He said” I commend INEC for standing firm however it is unfortunate that the offender himself is not remorseful and has succeeded in making three INEC officials to lose their jobs.
” It will serve as a deterrent to others. I sympathise with the families of the three INEC staff just as I sympathise with all Kogites for suffering the senseless rulers hip of Yahaya Bello.
” This is a shame to our State. It is a shame to Kogi. In the history of Nigeria, this is the first time the illegality by a Governor is affecting an ordinary citizen.
My advice to Bello is for him to resign Honorably
On his part, the lawmaker representing Kogi West in the National Assembly, Senator Dino Melaye, while demanding for the governor’s resignation, said the governor had succeeded in making the three INEC staff jobless.
“If it were a civilised society where leaders respect themselves and the people and where there is value, I think the best thing is for him to resign Honorably.
“But you know our society is such that they will always believe they can have their way by maintaining the immunity believing that after the expiration of his tenure in office he will find a way of escaping the wrath of the law.
“Our leaders lack integrity. After the illegality has been confirmed and a sack of three INEC officials involved, he has succeeded in putting the affected INEC back into the labor market. There is nothing better than for him to Honorably resign,” he maintained.
In a related development, the Kogi State People Democratic Party (PDP) Publicity Secretary, Bode Ogunmola is of the view that his party has been justified and vindicated that the governor acted illegally.
According to him, “Double registration is an offence under our laws and we are happy that INEC is doing the needful now. The guy doesn’t know the law and unfortunately he has surrounded himself with am armatures if not ordinarily his Attorney General should have been able to advise him that double registration is an offence.
“Definitely he cannot be in contention in the next election. INEC declared that for immunity they should have gone ahead with his prosecution. Don’t worry we are going ahead dusting our books and our legal department is up to the task and when we get to the bridge we will tell him where he belongs.
“Normally he wasn’t an elected Governor nobody voted for him actually, his coming was an aberration and we have always hammered on that and now that people are saying he should step aside he should obey the clarion call of the people of Kogi State.
“He is getting every foot wrong, he is not paying salary, he is not paying pensioners, the only project he commissioned this year is his personal house, he has not done any other thing outside of that.
” If you cannot carry a load why not step aside and allow people that are prepared to take over to come in and do the needful? So we are in support of the masses calling for him to step aside and go back to his transport business.
Also speaking, the Executive Director, Centre for Human Right and Conflict Resolution, Idris Miliki called on governor Bello to apologize publicly to citizens of Kogi State.
“There are two angles to it, one is the dismissal and retirement of the INEC staffs conforms with the civil service rule.
“It is most disappointing that he is the first Governor in the history of Nigeria to have perpetrated in this legality and criminality. The key issue here is the issue that this has vindicated the earlier case at the Supreme Court.
“For Somebody to be contesting for the exalted office of the Governor to register in Abuja and he does not know that all he required was to transfer his voters’ card.
“The electoral act states clearly how they can transfer voters card to the local Government not where you intend to vote. For him to rather mobilise to Government House as being alleged to conduct double registration as a sitting Government is condemnable, regrettable and an embarrassment for the people of Kogi State. We call on him to apologise to us.
“For me, resignation may not be the issue since he can not be tried while it is still in office but for the fact that INEC has conducted its activities in this manner I think he should apologise to the people of Kogi State,” Miliki said.