Nigeria’s democracy is facing a grave crisis, as recent events in Kogi, Imo, and Bayelsa states have made abundantly clear. Allegations of corruption and vote-rigging have marred these off-cycle elections, and the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has failed to uphold its duty to ensure free, fair, and credible elections.
The situation is dire, as Jibrin Samuel Okutepa SAN has eloquently pointed out. The morally depraved conduct of politicians and public institutions is undermining the very foundations of democracy. The courts, which are supposed to be the guardians of justice, have also been compromised, turning a blind eye to electoral irregularities and allowing the perpetrators to go unpunished.
This is a mockery of democracy, and it is unacceptable. We must not allow our hard-won democracy to be stolen from us by those who have no regard for the rule of law or the will of the people.
We call on the Nigerian government to take immediate action to address this crisis. INEC must be reformed and made truly independent. The courts must be held accountable for their failures. And those who have committed electoral crimes must be brought to justice.
We also call on the Nigerian people to demand better from their leaders. We must hold them accountable for their actions and ensure that they are upholding the principles of democracy.
The future of Nigeria’s democracy is at stake. We must act now to save it.